Cleaning our inner house!

 

Jesus says….”why look at the speck in your brother’s eye,when there is a log in your own eye!”

Look not at another to see into their faults and flaws and point the finger of blame but instead,look within ourselves when someone criticises, taunts us, hurt us and our feelings and speak out harshly directly at us.Its so easy to get riled up in a negative reaction towards the other,its so easy to get angry and in a split second….all hell can break loose,as the saying goes!We can either create a bad scene and fight back,fight back within ourselves and accumulate bitterness/resentment within the being,allowing further anger and hatred to brew….then manifest all kinds of ‘illness’ physically,emotionally,mentally and spiritually….

Or we can choose the noble and wise way which is the hardest/toughest way but indeed,the most efficacious and potent way to diffuse suffering and attain peace and healing ……….to practice pausing and to look honestly towards our own self….to check and see if our own house needs some cleaning to do.Yet our initial reaction is not wanting to be made a fool and the strong-willed ego(pride and arrogance) is blocking our way towards the wisdom to choose humility,understanding forebearance in order to find healing resolutions and utilising the power of forgiveness and compassion(kinder positive actions)…..

What good will it do,if we do not try to go within ourselves and understand who we truly are,of what we carry inside ourselves….we too react the same way as the others when we resist, defend,fight back and if we can be honest with ourselves,we too hold grudges,animosity,bitterness/anger,retaliate and speak out criticisingly and are also capable of hurling subtle abuses that we might not be aware of. Even when we allow ourselves to be humiliated(made used of),we do no good for others as well as ourselves.

Yes, when we can practice being aware,stopping and looking into ourselves to check our inner states instead of protecting the ego(pride and arrogance and selfishness),our hearts will keep breaking over and over as the ego is being beaten,the diminishing pride and arrogance is slowly giving way to humility(not humiliation),tremendous inner pain is felt,there is nothing to fear,the heart is resilient,it will withstand and make a final break to enter into the purification process and healing,the inner self cannot hold on to too much debris and ‘ugliness’.…..as Sufi poet and mystic Rumi says..”keep breaking the heart,until it opens”………When the heart breaks,a higher spiritual consciousness is born and we learn to take responsibilities and make amends and changes to benefit ourselves and others positively!

The True Self is pure and brilliant….the heart must break to allow light in and be drained of the impurities of un-necessary sufferings!When we hold on to more pain of resentment,anger and bitterness, retaliation and inner/outer aggression,jealousies and greed and maliciousness,we harden the heart thus making it harder to break!We want a soft,fertile and tender heart so the seeds of love that has already been planted can bloom beautifully………….

As humans on this human journey,we always find ways to justify our negative actions,words,feelings,intentions eg.being defensive(using cynicism,chiding,taunting,provoking,abusive language),denying our mistakes and protesting against the ‘other’ when it comes to protecting ourselves.Who or what are we truly protecting?It is most common to look outwardly at the other when something goes awry but if we truly want healing and peace, we look within to find the answers,the true understanding and knowing of ourselves in order to know that the other also suffers the same spiritual malady as every single one of us……..only when we can be sincere and courageous enough to face the truth….that truth will set us free from the chains of illusion, delusion, falsehoods and un-necessary suffering……..as Jesus and all awakened/enlightened teachers from all spiritual traditions will attest …….look within and seek the truth!

I knew what is was like to be taunted, made fun of,provoked,put down,abused,looked down upon,betrayed, hurt,dissappointed and called so many different types of ugly names,yes, I admit when I was ignorant, and not yet spiritually awake(prior to the year 1998), I used to fight back and retaliate and hurt back as much as I could,then I realised I was hurting myself the most driving me into an abyss of miserable suffering.Is it all worthwhile to keep unhappiness and suffering buried within our being?
Sometimes,in those desperate state of unhappiness,I would look at myself and feel unworthy and useless and ask myself if I had deserved to be hurt and why. Why did I have to hurt and hit out so much,I truly did not want to hurt others neither do I want to be unhappy and miserable and I would strive as much as I could to better myself.

At that time, I had no one to teach me how to look within myself or to find true love, peace and contentment within………I thought I was a good practicing Catholic,doing what I believed was righteous as taught by the church.I had to realise that readily believing in any religious teachings is only a small portion of the whole picture of truth…I had to see deeper into the truth of empirical experiences,applying and relating to spiritual teachings to my daily life by subjecting and being open to be hurt over and over,to be vulnerable to all kinds people and various circumstances without retaliation and escaping(running away in worldly pursuits and addictions).In other words I had to encounter the various faces of demons and angels and acknowledge their lessons they had to impart,good or bad and remained with them until they left without any clinging to good situations and rejecting bad ones….all was,is accepted, embraced and given thanks,forgiven and let go…………
I had to learn to sweep my inner house(being) and keep it clean thru rigorous, devoted and disciplined practises of meditation and other spiritual exercises,teachings,and the purification journey to go within myself to learn the truth……………….I am,who I am,no different,a human being like everyone else…….I open the door to everything and everyone who knocks on it with Awareness and Presence!

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Our Mission

A mission……………
We are all born into this world not merely to exist in a mundane way of life….. to be academically adept,grow up healthy, work and hopefully be successful and rich,find romantic entanglements,get married and raise a family and continue to seek for enjoyable outlets….while all of these are required for basic human survival and not to be condemned….there is a deeper, greater and wondrous mission planted in each being,each one totally unique …..from the indigenous person of the amazon to the president of a country,from the downtrodden of the poorest street of Calcutta to the richest celebrity star of Hollywood,from our own homes/lives to our neighbourhood and environment and society……
We might forget that we are all gifted with a Divine spark that could light the world afire with love, peace and healing!
So despite the outwardly,worldly pursuits,we are truly on a inward mission, a divine pilgrimage,unbeknownst to us,the journey,the adventure within ourselves…….no matter how long it takes to embark on this beautiful sublime journey,we remain at the edge waiting for our ‘ride’to take us IN………………music might just be one such implement to take us into the self……..

A new land, a new life

A new land,a new life!

May 1992…..I arrived at Vancouver International airport,my sister was at the airport to welcome me.Although I was in Vancouver a year earlier,everything seemed new to me…….I felt overwhelmed,frightened,yet excited to begin my new life, a place where I will call it home.
There also to welcome me in their Richmond home,was my nephew Alexander,who I met for the first time and an animal friend,the very gentle dog a collie namedKyroh(my sister’s dog).My eyes and heart felt wide opened in awe and anticipation of whats to come of the days/weeks/month/years ahead…where do I begin?What do I do?who’s to know what will become of me,now that I have landed in a new country.I have left so much behind….I cannot go back!My mind was overfilled with how to start a new life…….I had only my bags of clothes with me,while other household furniture and personal things were still behind in Singapore waiting to be shipped.This is no more a holiday but a real life situation where I have to start over again….another chapter….a new life story at age 35 began!

 

Before leaving for Canada…..I had many goodbye parties,saying goodbyes was hard yet there was a positive,joyful spirit felt within me…a looking forward to a new beginning with bouts of apprehension as well………….what was truly important to me was to feel and know the happiness and well wishes of family and friends for me!
Significantly also,I made courageous efforts to meet up with the ex-spouses(2 of them)….I sat with each of them separately to offer my thanks to them for the better times and also to say sorry for my wrongdoings….I knew I had to make amends for my own peace of mind as I embark on an unknown journey…. I never saw them as ‘enemies’or a regrettable part of my life but because of the pain I had suffered from going thru 2 very traumatic divorces…..I had evolved and moved on with a positive outlook of life….to be a better person…..and I thank them for being the catalysts for my moving forward to new challenges………I forgave and closed the last chapter of my life in Singapore! I opened a new one as I landed in BC!

 

Each day in this beautiful country felt like a door opened as a new morning arrived……..everyday was a ‘miracle’….meeting new people,new situation developes,new inspirations and creativeness arises….from one thing leading to another …….it felt like everything had been planted and waiting for me to walk right in the door!

I remember my first week…I was invited to a spiritual retreat and met a nun who introduced me to the owner of catholic bookshop and soon before a month in Vancouver….I had my first job,then came car lessons and soon driving my first car( never driven before).My momentous time was renting my first apartment close to where my sister lived within the time of 3 months after arrival…………………..by now I was making new friends and exploring around in my car…….my new found adventure began! I also had the opportunity to expand my flair and ‘love’ for emergency nursing by taking the course at the British Columbia Institute of technology and specialising in it…………………..so much more challenges took place,heartbreaks and downturns,achievements and joyous moments….and lots and lots of travel……….
In my 25 years living in BC, I made 2 very short visits back to Singappore,the last being 15years ago……….

 

Most importantly in 1998………another new change ripened………my spiritual transformative journey….a journey inwards into my Being……….
Changes and challenges and new beginnings are an inevtitable part of our lives….if we allow ourselves the courage to move to the direction of life’s open invitations be it in heartbreaks,unhappy situations,victorious moments,negative outcomes and day to day occurences………we experience the power of our inner strength and wisdom of discernment, growth and evolvement for the benefit of ourselves and others.

 

In the spirit of thankfulness….can we truly say a thank-you to suffering?

 

 

 

“when we practise gratefulness,there is a sense of respect towards others”

~~~~The Dalai Lama~~~

 

 

For the misfortunes/sufferings of families, loved ones and friends,for those who are afflicted with various illnesses and those marginalised,those in the throes of suffering mental deficiency and dementia,for them who are undergoing tragic circumstances and events…….for those left uncared for,forgotten,ignored and downtroddened,children traded in sex trafficking and the weak who are abused repeatedly….the poor and destitute,the homeless and hungry,aged and helpless,the drug addicts,traffickers and prostitutes,the mega-rich, politicians and people(including religious personalities) in the position of abusing power and control,the terrorists and creators of war/strife………..we thank them for they are the living moments of grace that can help give each of us the chance and opportunity to open our hearts and be of humble service to exercise our innate human gifts of love, kindness, courage,endurance,compassion,peace,charity,benevolence,healing potentials/empowerments and joy.

 

We thank them for their presence to learn from each one that we are not separate or different from them but we are them,we could be anyone of them…….while we are able to see and witness their visible sufferings….we too cannot deny our own inner struggles or outward sufferings which may or may not seem grave or horrendous.

 

Very often too we are the ‘terrorists’ of our own creation of problems and negativity…..we internalise this anger,resentments and hatred and project it out upon others,we inflict unreasonbale and unconscious suffering upon others,we too want to be in control and wield deliberate unhappiness and abuses upon ourselves and others then to make it worse,we blame others for our pains and so called failures, mistakes and hardships.We too become one with living in unfortunate circumstances,but we might not be conscious or think that we are one of those living in dire circumstances………how easy for us to take people,situations(good or bad) and having things around us for granted.We feel its ok to throw our anger and frustrations at someone else just because we don’t feel so good and are having a ‘bad’day!

 

When we become selfish and think that others don’t deserve our blessings and benevolent gestures,when we think that others make their own problems….that others suffering are not caused by us so therefore we don’t care,we don’t want to acknowledge or see others in suffering.This way of thinking,adds and not substract from our own sufferings.

 

Yes,we cannot deny that all these various unfortunate realities of living exists and it may sound absurd to be thankful for them but without all these truths that we witness happening around us wherever it may be or that we only notice over the media or hear of it or are personally affected by it ourselves,if we don’t acknowledge these various circumstances of sufferings,we cannot see the truth of suffering and put an end to suffering…….ours or that of others!We therefore cannot practise generosity of heart,we lose the connectivity of the innate wisdom of the heart to act in goodness and with kindness in the face of tragic circumstances of ours or that of others………we cannot engage in benevolence,we remain oblivious and unmoved……the path to witness our true nature of love and compassion are blocked!Can we therefore feel joy and happiness and peace that we sought after?

 

Of course its tremendously difficult to cultivate or feel or to simply be grateful for our misfortunes or that of others…how could we be thankful for those who have hurt, betrayed us through divorce, separation, abandonment and death,how could we practise the joy of feeling gratitude in the wake of all the suffering and tradegies we encounter every living day either through the media or within our own daily cycle of life?

 

 

In truth it is difficult to generate thankfulness or to become aware that practising gratitude in the wake of suffering acts as a catalyst to bring us back within ourselves to see our own true nature of innate wisdom and truth…so we can understand to accept that adversities in life are inevitable and will happen and can happen without warning and that we can choose to face them without resistence,anger,hatred,vengence and burying ourselves deeply in melancholy,depressions and hard-core bitterness.

 

If because of our and the misfortunes/griefs of others can drive us to exercise thankfulness,forgiveness,humility and the surrender to acceptance of its fate,how grateful for others too to be a witness and have hope,inspiration and motivation for living their life and to be open to goodness themselves.

 

When we can practise giving thanks even when we are feeling miserable because of our unfavourable,painful circumstances,we learn to trust in the abundance and bountiful positive gifts of life,we can restore and purify our inner negative afflictions with hope and healing,we grow in depth and maturity of being fully human in coping in times of distress,we can therefore become resilient to buffer the aches of life and living,we gain courage and feel the power of spiritual wealth within us.

 

The unfortunate realities of suffering in the world are present for us to be a witness not to criticise or to frown upon,or give us something to talk and discuss about,to feel sorry for or to have pity on them less fortunate than us or give us to think that we are better off than others…but it gives us the power to act with our hearts to do something however small,however possible with a sincere simple heart without expecting any rewards to show concern and care and to allow the suffering of others to help change,transform and heal us into the wholeness of understanding,respect, being kind,compassionate and loving beings…in other words we see our own suffering and our true nature of innate love through them…………and the world will surely and slowly heal just from the thankfulness and spiritual growth of one human being facing adverse conditions.

 

How easy for us to forget to say thank you to our spouses/lovers for their presence and support in our lives,to say thanks to our friends for their generosity in treating us with their time, fun and laughter,to our parents for cradling us in their arms when we were fretful and especially for the person who hurt us and made us feel unworthy…we thank them all for they give us a chance to truly open and journey into our hearts………….