The Ramblings of the Titanium Don

Explorations of Conscious Reality Creation and Other Matters

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How does Finding Good in Bad Things Make Life Better?

Even when things look really bleak, we can still find good in them.

We are living in interesting times, in many ways like the Chinese curse.  There are a lot of people who seem hell-bent on messing with social order, let alone taking away good things for people in the name of politics and money.

Yes, this is mostly a pretty terrible thing.  And yet, there has been good to have come of it.  People are taking more notice, taking more action, and striving to have their voices heard.  We are seeing effort participating in the dialogue, and maybe from there we will see positive change of it.

Here’s the thing to keep in mind.  If we focus on the bad, and we focus on anger, and the things that are negative out there, we will draw more of them to us.  That’s the way conscious reality creation works.  What you focus on, think about, feel about, and act on – you bring out more of.

It’s far too easy to get caught up in this madness.  What terrible thing did the President say or Tweet today?  How much further will Congress erode our democracy?  What is North Korea up to?  If we give this our attention, we energize it, and that will only amplify it, and draw more of it to us.

I know I don’t want that.  I can’t imagine anyone who does.

While it’s hard enough to not let national and international matters steal our attention, what do we do when we have more personal negativity to contend with?  What can we do to find good things in problems we are encountering on a more direct level?

Is there good to be found?

There is always something good to be found in bad things.  Flat tire on the way home from work?  Maybe that kept you from being part of a far worse accident.  Lost your job?  Perhaps it was not a great job for you, and now you can get something better.  Family member dying from cancer?  When they pass, they will no longer be suffering.

Jen Sincero, in You Are A Badass (I CANNOT recommend this book enough), writes about the notion of exploring unexpected and unwanted situations by stating, “This is good because” and taking it from there.  Certainly there will be times this is more of a struggle than other times, but that does not lessen its power to change how you are thinking and feeling.

I am in no way advocating for denial of bad feelings.  We are only human, we are going to have experiences that make us feel bad, and that we would rather not endure.  Everybody gets broken up with, loses a job, fails a test, gets injured, loses family and friends due to anything from disagreements to death.  We are going to have miserable experiences.  Full stop.  However, when this happens – if we dwell on them, keep our focus on them and let them dictate further emotions, we are more likely to gain more bad feelings similar to them.

Another issue with modern society is our tendency to not bother with accountability.  We love to blame, we love to pass the buck, we love to make excuses rather than take responsibility.  You hurt me and you made me feel this way and you make me so angry are all-too-common statements.  Without a doubt, other people can be the catalyst for our feelings, but only we can feel them for ourselves.

Focus on that which you can control.

I cannot do anything about what our government is doing, except to write letters, make phone calls, and vote in elections.  I can spread awareness about injustices, but if I am wholly focused on that negativity, I will only get angrier, frustrated, and draw more ways to feel angry, frustrated and negative overall.

The challenge is to be active, do something productive and constructive, but keep focus on that which you can directly effect.  I can share my own thoughts, try to persuade you to my way of thinking, but I cannot control how you will feel.  Period, end of story.  You, and you alone, feel what you feel, and the same applies to me.

That being written, it’s important to tighten our focus, and take an approach to work with the things we do have control over.  Our individual corners of the universe may seem insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but they are the only aspects of life we have total control over.

Pathwalking is about finding and traversing our own ways in life.  This is not the simplest idea, and there are challenges and obstacles and curves along the way.  Yet rather than letting life happen around us, we are choosing to take charge, and be aware of those things we can control.

We have no control over anyone else’s life choices.  This is why it’s important to be more aware of our own lives, our own existence, and to focus on working with what we have to make the best of the lives we are living.

This is Good Because…

…we get to choose.  This is Good Because we can find almost any path we desire, and take the journey of our life upon it.  Consciousness Creates Reality.  I want to manifest the most joyful, amazing, fulfilling life I can.  I am not a slave to anyone else, I am not beholden to anyone but me when it comes to my feelings.

Yes, it is important to be aware of what’s going on out there.  We need to be aware of this world to participate in it.  But there is a line between being aware and being overwhelmed, and it is so, so easy to cross that line.

Be the best you that you can be.  Walk the path that makes you feel the most good, the most happy, the most accomplished that you can.   When you experience unpleasant, unwanted and negative things in life, choose to process them and let them go; or hold onto them and let them dominate your life, and draw more similar negatives to you.

We are far more powerful than many would want us to be believe.  We are all creators, and we are all capable of manifesting incredible things.  Try to keep that in mind the next time you despair.

What good can you find in bad things you are experiencing?

 

This is the two-hundred ninety-first entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas for and my personal experiences with walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

Please take a moment to subscribe to this blog!  Even if you have done so before, there is new material, and a gift with your subscription.

Ten Positive Things for your Awareness

Positive things feels better than negativity.

This is a simple statement of fact.  Negativity simply put does not feel good.  Positivity does.

Nobody wants to feel bad, angry, distressed, upset, depressed, or any of the myriad of negative feelings we can feel.  Yet we practically bathe in negativity daily.

Why?  Because we are utterly immersed in it.  Social media is full of complaints, the news is often upsetting or depressing, and we tend to think about it, talk about it, and explore it thoroughly in the name of being “in the know”.

What IS positivity?  Positivity is being aware of what we are thinking, and consequently feeling.  When we are conscious of our thoughts and feelings we can work to better escape from the negativity surrounding us.  Positivity is not letting the negativity bring us down, but seeking good to lift us up.

There are any many, many positive things to think about and focus on.

Positive things.

The following is a partial list.  There are many, many more positive things out there, and at different times different things will work for you.

  1. Laughter.  Laughing changes our frequency, and makes us feel good.
  2. Sunshine.  Sunlight warms us, and can bring contentedness.
  3. Moonlight.  The moon is like an incredible beacon in the night.
  4. Music.  Words or not, music can impact and change our mood quickly.
  5. Meditation.  Nothing like quieting the mind to reset your feelings.
  6. Driving.  Sometimes traveling along the road at a decent clip provides a good escape.
  7. Exercise.  Movement causes physiological change, which in turn can generate positivity.
  8. Writing.  Getting matters out of your head can shift your perspective.
  9. Reading.  Escape reality in fiction, or learn better ways to help yourself within it.
  10. Smiling.  Just putting a smile on your face, even if you are not feeling it, can shift your attitude.

There are numerous options to generate positivity in our lives.  Some are specific to only you, and there’s nothing wrong with that.  No matter how negative you are feeling, there is always something positive for you to reach to.  This list is incomplete, go ahead and make your own – and keep it someplace easily turned to.

Finding positivity is not hard, but it does require action.

Knowing that positivity feels better than negativity, and it’s a matter of being aware of how we feel, we can work to change the bad to good.  When we become aware of our feelings, and we strive to find more positivity for ourselves, we not only feel better, but we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings in the collective consciousness.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred eighty-second entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

Please take a moment to subscribe to this blog (even if you’ve done so before – new service set up!), and receive your bonus content.

 

Why Do I Write?

I write on a lot of different topics.

It all began when I was nine, and I wrote (and illustrated) a 50 page sci-fi story.  I wrote a few other bits and pieces along the way.  Then I learned to type, and I started typing sci-fi works.  Then I started to write fantasy.

I began The Source Chronicles in 1998.  There was a scene, followed by another scene, then another.  In time I had a novel.  The novel became a series, which I am continuing to work on (all-too-slowly, though).

I don’t recall when, but I started blogging from time to time on LiveJournal.  Eventually, I started this blog, and now I post three times a week on different aspects of conscious reality creation.

I have mentioned on more than one occasion that I write in more than one genre.  One of the reasons I began these posts was to build the bridges between them, to better express myself as a writer.

For a long time I did not call myself a writer.  I would write things, both for work and for my own pleasure, but I didn’t call myself writer.  Then I got my first short story published, and from there my own self-talk changed.  I began to think, hey, I AM a writer.

Why, if I’ve written about this before am I bringing it up once again?  Because I am still working on my own doubts, my own skepticism, my own fears that I am only a pretender to the title.

What IS a writer?

I have a talent for getting caught up in my own head.  I question things, I doubt, I get skeptical, I get distracted.  For much of my life I saw the definition of a writer as either a published journalist, or a published author.  Anything in between was a pretender, a wannabe, a hobbyist.  That’s where I placed myself for some time.

Coupled with that, for years and years I did not know what I truly wanted from my life.  I spent a couple of decades exploring ideas, considering options.  I left college with a degree that I had no real use for in the workplace.  Here I was with different talents and skills and ideas, but limited drive and a host of fears holding me back.  There was much bouncing from job to job, but little consistency.

Yet I kept coming back to writing.  No matter what I was doing, somewhere along the way I was writing.  I would blog, I would work on The Source Chronicles, I would be doing something to put words to the page.  It took me a while to recognize that I AM a writer, because this is what I love and how I want to identify myself.

Further, there was the realization that, while I have always found writing in almost every form easy, for many it is not.  Even people I know to be good writers of their own accord come to me for my work, or to edit theirs.

What is a writer?  I no longer define a writer as a published journalist or author.  A writer writes because it is what they do.  A writer is someone who expresses themselves with words in such a way as to evoke understanding, feeling, thought and maybe even inspiration.  Sometimes this is simply a matter of self expression, and sometimes it’s to provide help to others.  I am a writer.

What identifying as a writer means to me.

It is my goal to become a bestselling author.  But more than that, it is my goal to be able to make my living as a writer.  That’s not an easy task.

So far, sales of my books are hobbyist, at best.  I sell a few e books here and there, a paperback or two…but my sales, while all appreciated, are not sufficient to produce steady income.  This blog has not reached that point, either.   Consciousness creates reality, but it requires focus.  I have thought about what I want, felt out what it will feel like, and taken actions to move it all forward.  Yet due to my need to understand the HOW of it, I move forward only at a snail’s pace.

Why does the “how” of it all get in my way?  Because manifesting any goal relies on trusting the Universe to work out the “how”.  For example, medical science told me that surgeries and long periods of time would heal me completely.  I refused to accept that it would take so long as they thought, and though I had no concept of HOW to accelerate my healing, I knew, unquestionably, that it would be so.  They told me it would be 1-3 years before I’d walk again – yet I was walking after 7 months.  The “how” of the speed of my recovery never even crossed my mind, I just knew it would BE.

How is the purview of the Universe.

This is the only aspect of “how” in regards to conscious reality creation.  Thought, feeling, intentional actions, and let the rest fall into place as needs be.  But due to my own skeptical nature, and some well-intentioned resistance, I keep trying to wrap my head around “how” this will happen.  How will I be able to make the money I need to make my living as a writer?

This warrants further examination.  I have no answers today, but questions to consider and further explore.

As always, thank you for Crossing the Bridges with me.

 

GOAL LOG – Week 29:

Diet:  Still maintaining less carbs and sugars.

Exercise:  Fencing one day, three days of a single lap around the small lake.  One more day with a ton of walking.

Writing:  The three blog posts were done.

Meditation:  Six of seven days last week, never less than 6 minutes (save one day with only 2 minutes).

Gratitude:  I expressed gratitude for 5 things on every day last week.

 

This is the forty-third entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Please take a moment to click the subscribe button and sign up for my newsletters!  Thank you!

 

What is Well-Intentioned Resistance?

As you walk your chosen paths, you will meet well-intentioned resistance.

Well-intentioned resistance is when people give you news and information that is “for your own good” or to “tell it like it is” or to otherwise offer advice, in order to keep you from making “poor” choices.  This comes from those closest to you, and can be very disconcerting.

Society has certain norms and expectations of us.  We are supposed to go through the motions.  You work five days a week, at least eight hours a day.  Get a job that pays the most money you can make, and expect that it might be soul-sucking and lacking in fun.  Have a romantic partner, because you’re not supposed to be alone.  Get a college education. 

When you break from those expectations, those who are closest to you may not understand.  They think that because you are doing something different and possibly risky, you don’t recognize the dangers.  They may well believe in you, but they also are firmly rooted in that which is considered “normal”.  What you are doing is alien, unusual, and thus suspect.

Meeting well-intentioned resistance is deeply frustrating.

The challenge of finding and choosing your own path, and breaking away from the societal norm is difficult enough.  When your loved ones question your choices, and your actions, it adds a whole layer of difficulty you don’t need.  Working on being more aware of your own thoughts, feelings and actions, then employing consciousness to create a new reality is huge.  Breaking from the expected is scary enough, but having other people add their fears to your work isn’t helpful.

Pathwalking is about taking control of life, choosing your own adventures.  When you come to terms with the notion that consciousness creates reality, it feels almost crazy.  Can it really be THAT easy to break away from a life that leaves me flat and build one that excites me?  Of course the answer is both yes and no, because becoming AWARE of how and what you are thinking, feeling and acting upon takes a lot of adjustment.

Adding outside influences to this mix is inevitable.  Unless you are completely alone in the world, or cut-off from news and social-media and whatnot, you will encounter outside influences.  It can be tough to avoid general outside influences, but it’s really hard to avoid loved ones, be they family or friends.

Don’t let the other people’s fear become your fear.

Because nobody but you can know what is in your head, explaining the path you are walking may feel futile.  Try though you might to show in detail how you are striving to manifest a life you want, some people simply won’t get it.  This is especially true when those people love you, and you love them, and they only want what they think is best for you.

This is one of the key issues, of course.  What THEY think is best for YOU.  How do they know?  How can they know?  Answer – they don’t.  But in their own experiences, what you are doing might seem unusual, might seem overly optimistic, might even seem crazy.  Because they don’t want you to be hurt, they offer you their own point-of-view, which is resistance to the change you are working to make.

It is human nature to protect those we love.  Whether that means standing between your child and a hungry lion, or trying to dissuade that child from an idea you don’t understand and fear might maul them in the same manner, it is viewed as protective, and a part of love.  Of course that makes it all-the-more insidious.

How do you accept that love without letting it affect you?

While our loved ones are throwing a wet blanket over our path in an attempt to stop us from being hurt, we, in turn, don’t want to hurt them.  Yet we generally won’t tell them to back off, or thanks but no thanks, or what-have-you.  Further, if they are the type to harp on a topic long enough, no matter how strong your psyche, it will wear you down and complicate the path you are walking.

What can you do about this?

First: Don’t take it in unless it REALLY resonates with you.  Sometimes, this outside perspective may show that you actually SHOULD step away from the path you are on.  Maybe the well-intentioned resistance opens a new path showing that which you are on won’t work.  However, once you’ve reached the point of meeting this resistance, this likely won’t be the case.

Second: Don’t argue.  It’s part of our nature to meet resistance with resistance.  This won’t dissuade the well-intentioned, they will take it as a sign that they are right.

Third: Don’t fully engage.  Thank them for their advice, but don’t really engage them to go further.  Change the topic.  Walk away.  Make an excuse to get off the phone or stop texting or whatever.

Fourth: Don’t discuss it with them in the future.  The people offering well-intentioned resistance have shown that they are not a good sounding board, so it might be best to steer clear of the topic as often as possible.

Fifth: Consult with a confidant for reassurance.  We are only human, and when our loved ones show that they don’t believe in our goals, well-intentioned or not, it hurts.  Talking with someone who supports your path can restore your confidence.

Keep walking your own path.

Pathwalking is a challenge.  However, I believe that manifesting the life I most desire, and being happy in what I do and how I spend my days is more important than going with the flow and being discontent.  This is why I am striving to choose for myself, and walk the best path for me that I can.

Have you met well-intentioned resistance along the way?

 

This is the two-hundred ninetieth entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas for and my personal experiences with walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

Please take a moment to subscribe to this blog!  Even if you have done so before, there is new material, and a gift with your subscription.

Can Positivity Make You Happy?

Ultimately, everybody wants to be happy.

I believe that’s what we all most want.  Happiness.  When we are happy, we are more capable of living a complete, satisfying life.

Positivity is a direct path to happiness.  Happiness is one of the ultimate in positive feelings, which is why it’s so important that we find and cultivate it as much as we can.

There is more than enough anger, intolerance, unhappiness and outright hatred in the world.  Adding to that only generates more.  Since consciousness creates reality, when that’s our focus, that’s what we create more of.  Getting inundated with and overwhelmed by all this negativity just draws more of it in.

This is why it’s important to look for and find things that make us feel happy.  Positivity, in any form that it takes, is a lead-in to happiness.  Positive is equal to good, and good is a feeling that can evolve into happy.

Happy is simpler than we make it out to be.

This is not about that blissful, euphoric, overindulgent happy that movies and TV try to sell us; nor is it the Happily Ever After of a fairy tale.  No, this is that feeling in the pit of your stomach, that sensation that makes you want to smile, maybe even laugh.  Honest, simple, happiness.

Rather than allow the sheer volume of negativity across social media, and all the insanity of politics and religion and such of modern society dominate us, we need to remain aware.  We need to be more familiar with our state of mind, our state of being.  From there, we will be better able to combat all the negative messages, and create better.

We cannot change the world if we do not change our small corners of it.  If you don’t feel good, how can you help anyone else feel good?  I fall into this trap myself from time to time, which is part of why I write about this frequently.  These Positivity posts were created to remind myself about the necessity of finding means to feel good, as much as they were created to help you do the same.

Want rather than DON’T want.

Last but very much not least, remember that the Universe doesn’t recognize messages like I don’t want to feel this way or that…it only registers want to feel this way or that.  This is why focusing on positivity to create more of it is imperative.  It is one of the keys to happiness.  Awareness of thought, feeling and action leads to conscious reality creation; ergo we are all cable of creating amazing, happy lives – and share them.

Finding positivity is not hard, but it does require action.  Knowing that ultimately, we all want to be happy, and positivity is a key to this, we can work on our awareness of positivity, and seek more of it.  When we find positivity, and we use positive things to make ourselves feel good, this can lead to us feeling happy; ultimately we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings in the collective consciousness.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred eighty-first entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

Please take a moment to subscribe to this blog (even if you’ve done so before – new service set up!), and receive your bonus content.

 

 

 

What Have I Done With Challenges?

Some challenges are better than others.

As I have mentioned before, the reason why this blog is called The Ramblings of a Titanium Don is due to two reasons. A title I get to assume from the Society for Creative Anachronism (the medieval re-enactment society I’ve been a part of for over 25 years); and the three titanium plates holding together my right clavicle.

Me, NYE 1999/2000. I am in a wheelchair in this picture.

In case you missed this: On the last day of November, 1999, I was struck by a car crossing a street a quarter-mile from home.   I suffered pretty severe injuries to my right leg, right clavicle, and nerve damage to my right arm.  What followed was a year of serious recovery and therapy, and some pretty wicked scars.

Yes, it was a hit-and-run.  No, they never caught the driver.  Now, nearly 18 years later, unless I show you the impressive scars (or you manage to hit the titanium plate with a sword while fencing against me) you wouldn’t know how broken I was.

Important life lessons were learned.

As I was starting my recovery, I discovered that there were three primary ways to live life.

  1. Go with the flow.  Let life live you.  Go about the routine, let time have its way with you and the natural ebb and flow of life carry you along.
  2. Curl up in a ball and wait for death.  Don’t experience life, complain about everything, blame everyone else, pray for the afterlife but mostly avoid this lifetime.
  3. Grab life like the proverbial bull by the horns, and take it for ride.  Make choices, take chances, fight and push and manifest what you desire.

I quickly learned that I preferred option 3.  My recovery surprised and delighted my therapists, my doctors, and my family and friends.  I defied expectations of both the speed of my recovery, and the totality of it.  It was during this period of my life that I came to recognize the power of consciousness creating reality.  I knew only one option.  There was no other choice.  I would walk again normally, I would fence again.  Hell, I would even run again with a fused tibia/fibula in my right leg.

This incident would redefine my life.  Over the course of the next decade and a half I shaped my life philosophy, and majorly embraced conscious reality creation to manifest my desires.  It’s not been without its struggles, and challenges, but it has redefined me in all sorts of unexpected ways.

Using the past to improve the present and future.

Every November there is a wonderful contest called National Novel Writer’s Month (NaNoWriMo).  The challenge: Compose a 50,000 word novelette in 30 days.  The prize:  The satisfaction of completing such a work.  I have faced this challenge several years, and completed a couple works (such as Vortex Pilgrimage).

In 2006, my second attempt at NaNoWriMo, I was debating what to write.  Several friends suggested that I should write out the story of my accident and recovery.  In particular many of the bits that had become some pretty funny stories years later.  I think we determined it might be an inspirational and humorous read for people.

This took my out of my comfort zone in several ways.  I was working a genre I did not normally do.  At that time I wrote sci-fi and fantasy more-or-less exclusively.  I also determined, because of the nature of the tale, to write in first person.  I normally work in third person perspective.

Most of all…there was a LOT of potential for embarrassment.  Yes, on the one hand I had this amazing recovery going on.  On the other, I was doing some rather uncool things (like cheating on my girlfriend).  How would this be received, not only by those involved in the story (even with the names changed), but by anyone who read it?

The very definition of Crossing the Bridges.

Suffice it to say, I wrote the story out.  I gave it an edit or two, and when I put up my author page, I included it in PDF for download.  When we first started dating my wife read it…and despite my less-than-chivalrous actions portrayed in the story, she stayed with me.

For a long time I have resisted sharing this.  Even though I have been told by several who read it this is one of my best works, I’ve been uncomfortable with taking it to a wider audience.  One reason is because I feared it might actually BE one of my best works.

What’s that all about?  Well, for a long time I was a sci-fi and fantasy writer.  It was these genres in which I most wished to be known.  I had a hard time wrapping my head around the notion of becoming known for anything else.

I am getting over that.  Hence this blog, and hence why I have finally have edited, and subsequently published The Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins With a Trip to the Post Office.

A sordid, funny, hopefully inspirational tale.

I hope you will consider getting a copy of my book, read, enjoy, and please review it!  I poured more of my heart and soul into this particular work, and told the story as truly as I could.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 28:

Diet:  Onwards and forwards.

Exercise:  Fencing two days, two days of a single lap around the small lake.  One day with a ton of walking.

Writing:  The three blog posts were done.

Meditation:  Five of seven days last week, never less than 6 minutes.

Gratitude:  I expressed gratitude for 5 things on three days last week.

 

This is the forty-second entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Please take a moment to click the subscribe button and sign up for my newsletters!  Thank you!

What Did You Learn Today?

You learn something new every day.

This is not just some cliché phrase, it’s literally true.  Some things we learn are huge and life changing, but most are minute and easy to overlook.

One of the greatest joys of life is that there is always something new to be learned.  Because there is always something new to learn, virtually no situation is impossible or irreparable.  We simply may be lacking in the necessary knowledge.

Learning is often tied in with change.  As we learn new things, we change our opinions, we change our technologies, our lives shift.  It is as inevitable as change itself, so it’s no surprise learning and change are linked.

One of the oddest things about people is our paradoxical resistance to change and desire to change.  We get comfortable with the world as it is, and dislike change.  Yet, at exactly the same time, we want to be happier, healthier, more centered, and that is a product of change.

Controlled change versus uncontrolled change.

While this is not a black and white, either/or concept, change generally happens in these two forms.  Controlled change, when we make choices like new jobs, new diets, new relationships and such.  Uncontrolled change is not in our hands, involves things like natural disasters, being dumped by a lover, getting fired from our jobs, breaking bones and being unable to exercise, and so forth.

Most people seek changes in their lives.  Some huge, some small, some subtle and some drastic.  In order to make changes, we usually have to learn something.  Examples of this include new dietary techniques, new job skills, new exercise routines, etc.

I suspect that because change can be so scary, and change is tied to learning, that this is where the current anti-intellectualism streak we’re seeing comes from.  All these new ideas we have available to us signify change, and people fearing change resist.  This partially explains science deniers, because science is all about learning and learning leads to change.

This is where choice is important.  When we choose to change, we increase our knowledge and learn more.  When we resist it, we still learn something, but it might not be the lesson we think it is.

Knowing can be a dangerous thing.

Knowledge is power.  The more we know, the more tools we have available to us.  One of my first self-help/spiritual reads was Shunryu Suzuki’s Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind.  While it’s an excellent introduction to Zen practices, it also makes some interesting statements about learning and knowledge.  For example, “We should not hoard knowledge; we should be free from our knowledge.”  This might be open to interpretation, but I view it this way: what we know is not set in stone, we should always be open to knowing more.

We live in a society where people mistake demagogues for the wise.  The “knowledge” they impart has no basis in fact, but they claim to “know” things.  While I do not like to get political in this blog, the perfect example is climate change.  Science has shown us that mankind is effecting climate change in an unnatural way, but many of our leaders prefer to ignore science for their own “beliefs” on the topic.  They “know” better.

While I know a lot of things, most, if not all, are open to reexamination.  Because there are new things to learn, what I know today is probably going to be different from what I will know tomorrow.

Recognizing that knowing is ever-changing is a part of learning.  When we recognize this, we can choose to learn things in order to take control of change.

Wisdom is learning, not knowing.

The use of the words “I know” frequently close us off from change.  In especial when we take them as truth from outside influences without giving them a thorough examination.  The primary notion of Suzuki’s Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind is that the “beginner” is always learning.  We gain experience, we gain knowledge, but so long as we keep our minds open like the beginner, we continue to learn and grow.  The wisdom of Zen practice is knowing that there is plenty you don’t know.

Stating “I know” with absolute certainty when it comes to self-actualization can be empowering, however.  Statements of this nature include I know I am amazing and I know I am the conscious creator of my reality and I know I am worthwhile and I know I am loving and lovable and such.  This is not conceit, its self-awareness.   Saying “I know” in this context is a matter of defining the self in positive, generative terms.

It has been long argued that human beings use only a fraction of our mental capabilities.  True or not, we can still conceive of and create amazing, incredible things that we have not created before.  Ergo, new learnings.  Only a hundred years ago global communications, computer technology, transatlantic flight and other modern conveniences were almost unimaginable.  But here we are, a century later, and look what all we have learned?  Science fiction postulates faster-than-light interstellar travel and other fantastical notions; but who’s to say we won’t learn these things in time?

Learning is joy.

I love to learn new things.  I also love to share the things I have learned with others.  This is why I write these posts, this is why I teach fencing, this is why I read self-help and spiritual books.  I love to learn, and there is always something new to be discovered and revealed and shared.

The world is pretty big.  The solar system is bigger.  Larger still is the galaxy.  On the same scale, the Universe is nearly infinite.  Great or small, there is always something new to learn, always experiences to be had.  Pathwalking is choosing to learn, to grow, to effect change for ourselves.

Every single day I learn something new.  This is what excites me most about life.  Everything new I learn opens up possibilities.  Consciousness creates reality, so there is always learning to be had.

What did you learn today?

 

This is the two-hundred eighty-ninth entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas for and my personal experiences with walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

Is Negativity Easier than Positivity?

Negativity only seems easier than positivity because we are absolutely inundated by it.

Don’t believe me?  Look how many of the news articles we read begin with a message that’s negative.  How many politicians focus more on the negatives of their opponents rather than their own positives?  How many people on your social media accounts are complaining about it being Monday?

Everywhere we turn we are bombarded by negative messages.  We are constantly being showered with this is failing or that is bad or a terrible thing you need to know or these people did these awful things and so on and so forth.

Further, it has become more normal to criticize than to praise.  We readily seek to find fault and place blame and to complain about the state of the world.  We are swamped in messages of low frequency, of bad feelings, of fear and anger and worry and distress and on and on and on.

Bad news sells.  Titillating and sensational stories entice, anger, enrage and stir people’s negative emotions.  We get so caught up in day to day minutia, we don’t give it conscious thought until it is too late, and we have taken the negativity in.

How do we combat this?

Each and every one of us has the power to shape our own lives.  Consciousness creates reality.  Because this is true, when we choose to be conscious of how we are feeling, we can change our reality.

This might strike you as being too easy, too cliché, too pie-in-the-sky, too optimistic.  Maybe so, I can concede that…but do you enjoy feeling bad?  Do you like feeling low, feeling annoyed, or angry, or sad, or any other negative way?

I do not know anyone who wants to feel negative.  Yet rather than be aware of how we are truly feeling, we frequently go on with our day, soak up all the negative messages and unconsciously take them on.  We don’t recognize this until it’s too late…and then, if that weren’t enough, we wind up spreading it further by talking about it, lamenting it, gossiping about it, and so on.

We can choose Positivity.

We can choose to focus more on being aware of our thoughts and feeling.  With that awareness we can discover sooner rather than later if we are more positive than negative.  We can choose one of the many options available to us to generate and build Positivity in our lives.

I am not suggesting that we shouldn’t get angry about injustice and intolerance and other issues.  But while we need to be informed, we also need to turn from exploring the negativity and finding positive means to counter it.  You don’t fight fire with fire…which is why you don’t stand up against negativity with negativity.

Negativity is not an easier choice than positivity…but it is a choice.  Which would you prefer?

Finding positivity is not hard, but it does require action.

Knowing that negativity only seems easier than Positivity because we are inundated with it, we can be more aware and combat it.  When we are more aware of our thoughts and feelings, we can change them, and control them, and with change and control we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings in the collective consciousness.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred eightieth entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

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How do I Deal With a Test of Faith?

My faith is being tested.

I am facing a test of my belief in conscious reality creation.  Do I believe in myself, and my own ability to consciously create the reality I want to live in?  Do I believe I am manifesting the life I really want to experience?

I have always been the best at sabotaging myself.  There is no need for anyone else to interfere, I can do it just fine, thanks.  I always manage to find the right excuse, or the right issue, or what-have-you to keep small, to maintain the light, but not to increase its intensity.

Why do I sabotage myself?  Because change is scary.  Because my subconscious mind disbelieves I am deserving of the dreams I have.  There is an equal fear of success as there is of failure.  As much as I want to manifest a different life, there is comfort in what I currently have.

I know what I want, and I know that I have to trust the universe that I can manifest it.  The problem I run into is that my inner skeptic resists, and the challenge I experience from that is a lack of faith in consciousness creating reality.

How is my faith being tested?

I have a job that pays me a decent salary, and offers me some decent benefits, too.  I also get paid time off, PTO, which I have not had for quite some time.  This is something I’ve taken advantage of, and so I’ve enjoyed several long weekends, as well as a week at an SCA war in Mississippi, and gotten paid while not working.

Our timekeeping system at this job is wildly inaccurate.  As such, I was led to believe that I had considerably more PTO than I actually do.  In fact, I have so little PTO left that it will pretty much go to the remaining holidays of the year (yes, our system makes no distinctions, PTO is PTO).

This being a holiday week, the office was closed Monday and Tuesday.  To travel to an SCA event, I took today off.  Except, now, I cannot request to be paid for any of these three days.  Thus, I will only be paid for two days this week.

Will this hurt me financially?  Currently, I am happy to report that it will not.  And yet, I am slightly uncomfortable, and debating changing my plans.

In what way is this testing my faith?

I have written here before about my desire to move on from this job, and to write full time.  I write constantly about consciousness creating reality…but as soon as something uncomfortable happens, I shy away.  To be free to travel to events at will and choose how to spend my days is a major component of the reality I am striving to make manifest.  Do I have enough faith in my conscious reality creation to go with my original plan, and continue on the path I have chosen?

Every single self-help and spiritual book I have read or listened to says the same thing.  To manifest the life I want, I have to step outside of my comfort zones.  I have to get uncomfortable, I have to take chances and risks.  It is imperative that I have faith in the Universe to take my thought, feeling and action and make it real.  This is particularly important when the how is unknown…and frequently, the how is a mystery.

Yes, my job is stable, the pay is decent, and the dress code at the office is outstanding.  But this is not who I am, and this is not where I want to spend most of my waking hours.  I want to live the fullest, most joyful life I can.

Can I surrender to the Universe?

There is no denial that I am a bit of a control freak.  Hell, one of the points of Pathwalking is to take control of my destiny.  I have succeeded in consciously creating my reality before, when I had total faith in only one possible outcome.  Some of these experiences were enormous, and some far more minute.  But I know, logically, that I am able to manifest what I desire.  Yet emotionally, I have a much harder time accepting this.  Thus, this test of faith.

Do I truly believe that I can have the goal I am striving towards?  Am I deserving of this?  Can I succeed at manifesting the life I most desire?  Am I willing to get uncomfortable in making the life I want to make?  These are the questions of faith before me, and together they all boil down to this last question.  Can I surrender it all up the Universe?

Is my faith that consciousness creates reality as strong as I wish it to be?  Can I put out the thought, feel the emotion, and act intentionally without knowing all of the how of it, and let the Universe do its thing?  That’s the question with the glowing eyes boring into me.

Expressing my faith.

In showing my faith in the Universe, I am not changing my plans.  Uncomfortable is but a step when it comes to change.  I move forward, eyes wide open, trusting in my faith.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges with me.

 

GOAL LOG – Week 27:

Diet:  I was lax over the past weekend, but apart from a higher carb intake, not so bad.

Exercise:  Fencing one day, two days of a single lap around the small lake.  One day with a ton of walking.

Writing:  The three blog posts were done.

Meditation:  Four of seven days last week, never less than 4 minutes.

Gratitude:  I expressed gratitude for 5 things on four days last week.

 

This is the forty-first entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

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Where do you find your Path?

Where do you find your path?

This can be a daunting question.  Finding the path you want to walk is a matter of necessity.

No two paths are the same.  Similar in some respects, but not the same.  For example, it is my personal goal to become a bestselling author.  While there are lots of bestselling authors out there, each of us will traverse different paths to that goal.

Knowing my path, where did I find it?  The simple answer is that I have found it in joy.  When I get the most lost in what I am doing, and I am happiest, that is where I found my path.

There are several universal means to finding the where of your own paths.  As such, where you find your path, different though it may be, originates from the same point.

Where do you feel most joyful?

This is the first question.  What do you do that brings you the most joy?  What makes you feel the happiest?  It is there you can find your path.

For me, there are two particular things that bring me absolutely tremendous joy.  Fencing and writing.  Whenever I get the chance to attend a fencing practice or weekend event, I fight with all the energy I can muster.  I absolutely love the game, love the feeling of swords in my hands, the difference in choice of weapons.  Learning a new move, or employing something unusual is exciting.  The joy I feel from the game moves me.

Writing is how I best express myself.  I can wrestle words into submission in any form I choose.  I love writing sci-fi and fantasy, but I also absolutely love writing my blog.  Sharing my thoughts on Positivity and Pathwalking and Crossing the Bridges makes me unbelievably happy.  It feels good to reach out to and support other people striving to live their fullest lives.

Even writing brochures and advertisements and web content is still fun for me.  Where mathematical equations frustrate me, creating with words to me is almost as easy as breathing.

Thoughts, feelings, and actions.

Everything begins in thought.  Every invention, every manmade notion began in thought.  You wouldn’t even have a path to consider traveling without a thought.  So the thought is the beginning.

To turn the thought into a thing, you have to feel it.  Feeling what it would be like to have your thought made manifest is important.  You need to power your thought with emotion, or you won’t create much of anything.  Feeling drives the thought into being.

From the thought, to the feeling, you move to intentional action.  Taking a step based on the feeling from the thought is where you begin your Pathwalking.  So you find your path in the thought, the feeling points you in the right direction, and the intentional actions you take move you along it.

We choose to walk our own paths because we want to control our own destinies.  There will always be new paths to walk, because life, the Universe, and everything changes.  While this can be somewhat daunting, it’s also pretty exciting.

Where do you lose track of time?

I have a friend I have been fencing with for quite some time now.  He and I will frequently fight at practice for a ludicrous amount of time.  Multiple passes, each of us attacking and defending, and on more than one occasion we’ve only stopped because we realized we had been at it for some time.  We’ve been known to go anywhere from thirty to forty-five minutes.  When each bout on average lasts less than a minute, this equates to a whole lot of fighting.

It is the joy of the game that makes us lose track of time.  Our bodies get tired, we perspire a whole lot, but we are having so much fun that we just don’t notice the time pass.  It is that feeling that will tell you where your path can be found.

Writing works the same for me.  Often, when I get going on a story or editing, I will completely lose track of time.  I won’t stop for anything because I am excited to get the idea out of my head and onto the page.  The words flow through me, and I have to put them out there.

Sometimes I will go back and read something I wrote, and I was so caught up in the moment that it’s almost unfamiliar.  Losing yourself to joy is a sure sign you’ve found your path.

Beware of outside influences “accepting” you.

I don’t know about you, but I have been told more than once that work is not supposed to be fun.  Work is something you do because you need to earn money.  You take the best paying job with the most benefits you can get, and you do it because that’s what society expects of you.  Do your job, earn your pay, take your joy in the little things but suck-it-up, because that’s how it works.

I have a very hard time accepting this notion.  Why?  Most adults in our society spend from six to twelve hours, a third to half of their time awake, every day, at work.   If your job bores you, leaves you dissatisfied, or worse stresses you out completely, is it worth it?  Is money and benefits but spending most of the day somewhere you are not joyful worthwhile?

We are only in this life for a limited time.  To spend the majority of that time unhappy is utterly illogical.  Yet we readily accept the notion that to participate in our society, we have to suck-it-up and do the job.  Take that commute, work for and with people you’d rather not spend time with, earn the money.  That is how we gain acceptance from society at large.

Find your path, find your joy, live huge.

This is why I have chosen to Pathwalk.  I don’t want to spend the precious time I am on this planet, in this body, unhappy.  Living the fullest life I possibly can is what I desire, and I want to manifest awesome things and contribute what I can to the world at large.  I want to live in joy, and I want to choose for myself what that means.

Consciousness creates reality, and I want to create the best reality I can.

Do you know where you will find your paths?

 

This is the two-hundred eighty-eighth entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas for and my personal experiences with walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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