We’re offering a stream of contemplations each Sunday with Éowyn Ahlstrom, reflecting on the meditation theme of the week within the Practice of Living Awareness. This week we worked with the smile as a form of welcoming meditation practice into your day as well as welcoming the present moment into your awareness. Éowyn is a … More Pondering the Practice
Smile Meditation – Day 3 This week we have been working with a basic premise of mindfulness: paying attention to what is happening right here, right now… without judgement. Why the last segment – without judgement? Judgement is a form of contraction. When we judge, we create stories around what’s happening. We label it, … More Allowing for What’s Next
“We shall never know all the good that a simple smile can do.” – Mother Teresa While a smile has a vibrational ripple effect that extends far beyond our perceptive reach, we can immediately sense the goodness that wearing one and sharing one brings. Smiles not only make us feel happy, but they also help … More Smile and the World Smiles Back
Smile Meditation – Day 1 Spacious and easy: these can be the qualities of this very moment, if we choose to bring them forward. They’re a bit like the clear blue sky… always there, yet not always revealed. Perhaps we simply need to look up more and take it in, or give the cloud cover … More Begin With a Smile
Smile Meditation – Day 3 London, 1968. In a recording of a live performance of “Ain’t Got No – I Got Life,” Nina Simone sings about struggle – hardship and struggle – finally asking, “What have I got nobody can take away?” And then she smiles a beautiful smile. “Got my hair, got my head, got my … More I Got Life
Smile Meditation – Day 2 May your smiles be filled with juicy sweetness. A smile is a bowl after all, and that’s not only considering its shape. A smile contains. It makes room for and allows. It says, “yes.” A smile holds you in pristine presence. In today’s meditation, we sit with the subtleties of the smile and … More Fill Your Smile
Smile Meditation – Day 1 We’re back with a new round of meditations and we’re so glad you are joining us. On behalf of Spirit Fire, welcome. Gentleness, peace and openness will be themes throughout. These can be the qualities of the moment, any moment. We can create space for them, allow them in and … More A Breath and a Smile
“Smile as the great benevolent being that you are. Smile, blessing everyone and everything in your day.” (from the meditation) To remind oneself of the truth of who and what one is sets the moment right. No moment is about impatience, harsh words, degrading thoughts or actions toward someone, or punitive thoughts about oneself. No … More 1c: Benevolence
A smile changes everything, meditation does too. Meditation has the potential to change a person from the inside out – but only if the person desires such change. Truth is that meditation will bring results into one’s life, but only if one cultivates the principles of meditation. And, of course, this would be so. Like … More 1b: Transformative
Peace and happiness can be the quality of this moment, if we bring them forward. Truth is, like the sky, peace and happiness are already present. Just as we can bring the expanse of the sky into a moment by looking up, we can bring peace or happiness into a moment with a smile. The … More 1a. a Wiggle and a smile
What makes you smile? How do you feel when you do? The sky makes me smile, as do leaves and children and snowflakes and wind. I smile with understanding a lot, grateful that something has context or meaning or purpose and that I recognize that. Kindness makes me smile: giving it and receiving it. Helping … More 1c: Goodness. How powerful!
Our biology tells us that we are hardwired for happiness and to bring happiness to others. When we smile a cascade of beneficial endorphins flow through our brain. With a smile, our parasympathetic system relaxes; and this happens both when we give a smile or receive one. Infants develop exponentially when in a happy, loving … More 1c: Smile. Happy people live longer!
This meditation combines Smile and Tip of the Nose. It is a joyous and sensate meditation. I’ll be traveling to Oklahoma to teach a meditation retreat for the week. There will be no live meditations until next Tuesday. Please use the blog to support your practice. Explore the meditations or simply re-do ones from the … More Feel it from the inside
Life can be messy. The toilet backs up, the kids are tired, the boss had too much coffee, the rain slowed down everything. And that’s the small stuff. We could live in a war zone, have serious life transformations going on due to terminal illness of a loved one or our self, a tornado or … More 1b: Smile: Life can be messy
The new round of The Practice of Living Awareness begins with the only thing possible: a smile. Smiling is a choice, and awareness is too. That’s the curious thing about being human: that happiness is the choice of how we interact with a moment, and that awareness is the choice of being Aware. The power … More Step 1a: Smile with Awareness
The Intermediate level of The Practice of Living Awareness has a two-fold purpose: to train a practitioner to accomplish deeper states of meditation and awareness, such that the practitioner lives the wider range of meditation and accessed awareness. The purpose of this is so that one’s life becomes increasingly the manifestation of one’s practice. This … More Translucent human beingness
Is it crazy to be happy or crazy that we are not? Humanity is at a turning point – joy and shared abundance or the way things are. This man with pigeons on his shoulders is living from the inside out. Something, in this life or in previous ones, helped him let go and, instead, … More Harmony from the inside out
Mahatma Gandhi smiled. He also cried when the moment was sorrowful, laughed, and was occasionally perplexed. Mohandas Gandhi became recognized as a world saint because he practiced the way of the smile, its patience, wisdom, and kindness. It became known as the Way of Non-violence. Doing so he inspired hundreds of thousands of people. He … More Change the world with a smile. 1e
Empowerment or disempowerment come down to simple components. Awareness, self-recognition of awareness, and self-volition aligned as Awareness. The first step in creating this habit is noticing the true experience of any moment. That can only bring power if and when the noticing is followed by acknowledging the true experience in a moment. We will discover … More Empowerment: 1b
It is that simple. Awareness is one’s choice. Smiling, letting go, letting be, rejoicing, celebrating, appreciating, understanding all are one’s choice. Patience, contentment, ease, composure also are one’s choice. Similarly, so distraction, rudeness, impatience, agitation, aggravation, denial, and heedlessness are too. Life is one’s choice. And giving one’s self this truth – Awareness is one’s … More “We smile, and take a long-slow-deep breath …”
The Practice of Living Awareness empowers you. Feeling frustrated? Breathe a long slow deep breath. Mind confused? Smile, breathe, then soften and open to what you are trying to control. Get in touch with the fact a control issue is actually what is going on. Feeling a churning feeling, judgemental, petty, or aggressive? Smile within … More * (Step 6/d) Create your day as you go
We begin every meditation with a smile. Here’s another reason why.