Forge Firewalls as a Spiritual Practice

dreamstime_m_67569730The term ‘firewall’ originally referred to a wall intended to confine a fire or potential fire within a building. Later, the term ‘firewall’ referred to structures, such as the metal sheet separating the engine compartment of a vehicle or aircraft from the passenger compartment.

In the IT world, firewalls limit the data that can pass through them and protect a networked server from damage by unauthorized users. A firewall typically establishes a secure cyber barrier between a trusted and secure internal network and another outside network, such as the Internet, that is assumed to be unsecured.

Using firewalls as a metaphor, we’ve coined the expression ‘spiritual firewalls’ (denial statements that negate the illusionary power of outer appearances). In higher thought language, forging firewalls through the use of powerful denial statements helps you ward off the negative effects of false assumptions and impressions caused by mindlessly believing what you see and hear.

Here’s How This Spiritual Practice Works:

Use these ‘firewalls’ as a way of getting started to ward off the effects of anything negative. Here are several examples of denials (firewalls) that you can use to limit and/or eliminate the negative effects of outer appearances:

  • I now transcend all beliefs, patterns, and forms of illness and disease.
  • I fast from all doubt, fear, and lack.
  • I deny the power of outer appearances to limit or block my good.
  • I erase all negativity from my life.
  • I veto all notions of my own insignificance.
  • I purge all thoughts of lack and insufficiency from my consciousness.

Laptop And Tick Showing Online Success

Follow-up denials (firewalls) like these with powerful affirmations that attest your belief – and resolve – to accomplish what you want. Record your affirmations and practice saying both the denials and affirmations as a tandem so you can experience the robustness of these ‘pillars of vocal power.’

Learn more about Denials and Affirmations by visiting our website and joining our membership site.

 

© 2014 Bil and Cher Holton, YourSpiritualPractice.com
Photo Credits, used with permission:
© Binu Omanakkuttan | Dreamstime.com – Internet Security concept
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Stay to the Left of But: A Great Spiritual Practice!

StayLeftOfBut

What most people are unaware of is our self-talk becomes instructions to our subconscious, which carries out the ‘orders’ given to it by our conscious mind. And if those instructions are negatively-charged, we get negative results.

Essentially, we program negativity into our lives as a result of our negative thinking, which generally creates negative choices, which lead to negatively-charged actions.

Most of us are constantly bombarded with this self-imposed mental clutter. We talk to ourselves all day long and, unfortunately, this self-censorship is often tainted with guilt about our past or anxiety about our future. This negativity can destroy any seed of hope that we may otherwise have in striving for our dreams.

Here’s a few of examples of what most of that negative self-talk sounds like. See if you’ve ever talked to yourself this way:

  • I’m capable, but I never seem to get noticed.
  • I know who I am, but I still doubt myself too much.
  • I wish I was smarter, but I didn’t inherit the right genes.
  • I choose to be present in all I do, but I feel like I’m still behind the eight ball.
  • I know I should move on, but I don’t believe I can ever love again.
  • I try to stay positive, but there’s always a dark cloud hanging over me.
  • I believe Truth principles work, but they don’t seem to work for me.

Notice the defining word in each of those sentences: BUT. When we keep ‘butting’ ourselves, our ‘buts’ become “instructions” to our subconscious, which works tirelessly to ensure these ‘instructions’ become our reality. So, we encourage you to stay to the left of but. And here’s what that looks like:

  • I’m capable.
  • I know who I am.
  • I wish I was smarter.
  • I choose to be present in all I do.
  • I know I should move on.
  • I try to stay positive.
  • I believe Truth principles work.

Edit out the wimpy voices and phrases that disempower you. Censor thinking that vetoes your self-worth. Ban thoughts that deny your innate divinity. What we’re suggesting is: Eliminate stinking thinking. Stay to the left of but!

One of the greatest enemies of your spiritual growth and human happiness is self-rejection, because it contradicts your Inner Voice that says “You are God expressing at the point of you.”

Staying to the left of ‘buts’ is like staying out of mud puddles. If you’re stuck in a mud puddle, it means there’s higher ground all around you. All you have to do is find higher ground. And staying to the left of ‘buts’ is higher ground.

How we see ourselves and what we say about ourselves is based on what social scientists call a ‘self-fulfilling prophecy.’ You’re no doubt familiar with it. 20th-century sociologist Robert Merton was the one who coined the term ‘self-fulfilling prophecy.’

Head-megaphone-dt_m_54884692It means that we react or respond to what’s ‘out there’ based on our perceptions of what we believe to be real. AND we make judgments based on the meanings we attach to our experiences, rather than the experiences themselves. And self-talk is a direct result of the meaning we attribute to our self-worth.

Martin Seligman, the father of positive psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, studies the ways people explain the positive and negative events in their lives. He has found that pessimists form world views around negative events and explain away anything good that happens to them. Optimists tend to distance themselves from negative events and embrace the positive.

Things people who stay to the right of but seem to have in common are:

  • They magnify the negative aspects of a situation and filter out all of the positive ones.
  • When something bad occurs, they automatically personalize it by blaming themselves.
  • They automatically anticipate the worst. They catastrophize it.
  • They see things only as either good or bad. There is no middle ground. They feel they have to be perfect or they’re a total failure. They see polarity instead of unity. They are conditioned by the world of outer appearances.

Trash-talking ourselves is demeaning and totally uncalled for. Our sense of well being decreases pretty quickly if we don’t stay to the left of our ‘buts.’ We’re inviting you to stay to the left of your ‘buts,’ however, what that really means is eliminating your buts.

Tips to Help You Stay to the Left of But

Back up the Power of Positive Thinking with the Power Of Possibility Thinking. Research has found that when you’re down and out and force yourself to say positive things to yourself, you may end up feeling worse because your internal lie detector goes off. Do you know what we mean? Have you ever felt that way?

Here’s the thing. Possibility thinking doesn’t activate your internal ‘lie detector.’ It puts things in a believable context. It softens the distance between how you really feel about yourself and what is possible.

So, don’t let your ‘buts’ pollute your present or your future. Choose words that inspire you, motivate you, make you laugh, and boost your morale: “You da Man” or “You go, girl.”

Your actions are inspired by your thoughts. If you can change the way you think, you can begin to change the actions you take. So, remove negative and pejorative terms from your self-talk. Keep your inner critic in its place.

Give your Inner Critic a Name. Preferably a silly one! It’s hard to take that negative inner voice seriously when you call it The Nag. (“Here comes The Nag again.”) That’s what Seligman calls it. Brené Brown, PhD, a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work and author of The Gifts Of Imperfection, calls hers ‘The Gremlin.’

The important thing is to create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life by staying to the left of but. That means eliminating the ‘but’ from your life entirely!

Align Your Human Self with your Divine Nature.  Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of the possible you into the roaring flames of self-worth and achievement as you align your human self with your Divine Nature. And there’s no ‘but’ in that statement!

Positively, Absolutely, Stay to the Left of But. And remember, a positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it’ll annoy enough people to make it worth your while. Become consciously aware of what you are saying, and when you catch yourself saying but — just stop — and listen to the Truth of who you really are, as you walk the spiritual path on practical feet!

© Bil & Cher Holton, The Global Center for Spiritual Practices

Photo credits, used with permission:
  © Cher Holton
  © Mikhail Avdeev | Dreamstime.com
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The Spiritual Meaning of the Spear that Pierced Jesus’ Side

NX_gladiator_sidespearThe Side-Piercing Spear, also known as the Spear of Destiny and the Lance of Longinus, is the name given to the spear that pierced the side of the Christ as Jesus as he hung on the cross, according to the Gospel of John. You hear a lot about it, particularly during the Easter season. But what is the MetaSpiritual meaning of this powerful archetype and how can understanding it offer spiritual enrichment for us?

First, Some Historical Context

Why do we call this an archetype? You may be interested to know about other ‘spear-piercings in the side of world saviors’ myths and their possible connections to the Christian Christ myth.

Even though the traditional crucifixion story from a Christian viewpoint always includes a Roman centurion using a spear to pierce Jesus’ side,  which resulted in water and blood pouring out, three of the four gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) neglect to mention it. Why did they omit this important incident?

Interestingly, the ‘spear piercing the side’ incident seems to have been added for a specific purpose. It is clear that in some of the ancient cultures in the era of and before the Roman Empire, there were sacrificial victims who were portrayed as having been ‘wounded in the side.’

The Scandinavian god Odin and Marsyas of Mindanao were said to be hung on a tree and stabbed with a spear, just as the Christ as Jesus was said to have been crucified and stabbed by Longinus’ spear. Vishnu, Wittoba, and Adonis were all crucified saviors stabbed in the side as well.

Spear-ca15322640Our conclusion is that ‘side-wounding and spear-piercing’ are universal archetypes. They point to something fundamental in the human condition! The spear piercing may even point to humankind’s dynamic divinity represented by the ‘first couple’- Adam and Eve! We’ll explain later.

For example, in an archetypical motif, the Norse God Odin was hung on a tree and wounded with a spear. Much like the Christian God who was incarnated as Jesus, in the Norse mythology Odin is depicted as hanging on the ‘world-tree’ in an act of sacrifice and wounded with a spear.

In the ancient Norse text the Havamal, one of the Norse eddas, contains a poem called the Runatal (stanza 138), which quotes Odin as saying:

“I know that I hung, on a windy tree,
for all of nine nights, wounded with a spear,
and given to Óðinn, myself to myself,
on that tree, which no man knows from what roots it runs.”

What’s even more interesting is that, Odin’s beloved son, Balder, is pierced with a spear of mistletoe. Balder dies, as did the Christ as Jesus, and like Jesus in Revelation, Balder will be reborn or resurrected in the time of the Ragnarok or the Norse ‘apocalypse’ to destroy evil once and for all.

Moreover, as Jesus is the ‘Light of the World, so Balder is the ‘god of light.’ So, like Jesus, Balder is the savior of the world who brings peace. And, similar to Jesus who had 12 apostles, Balder is depicted as having 12 knights.

The Christ motif is universal. Christ means ‘the anointed one’ and is a term applied to Attis, Adonis, Tammuz, Osiris, Krishna and many other pre-Christian gods. Even the name ‘Christ’ is a variation on KRST (Horus, the Anointed One) and Krishna (Christna or Christos in Bengali) thousands of years before the Christ as Jesus walked the Earth.

In his book the Bible Fraud, author Tony Bushby reminds us: “The word Kristo and its derivations, Krst, Krist, Kristo, Khyst, and Krish-na, all appeared in every ancient religious system. The original Kristo concept was believed to be the personal and invisible mediator and guide between God and everything spiritual in man. The Krist concept has been an ancient religious tradition continually suppressed by the Catholic church through the centuries.”

 

Some Spear-Piercing Facts (This may get too medically technical for you! If so, just skip on to the next section, where the MetaSpiritual Interpretation Occurs)

Here are some interesting facts that would describe a spear piercing someone’s side, whether that person was the Christ as Jesus or any other of the world saviors who suffered the same fate. We’ll use the Jesus event as the archetypical example of the universal metaphysical meaning of having one’s side pierced with a spear or lance. We believe you’ll find this information interesting indeed – even life-changing.

Two aspects of Jesus’ death are sources of great controversy, even to this day. They are:

  • the nature of the wound in his side and
  • the cause of his death after only several hours on the cross.

Some scholars attribute the flow of water to be ascites or urine, from an abdominal midline perforation of the bladder. However, the Greek word plvra (or pleura) used in John’s Gospel clearly suggests laterality and implies the rib area being involved. It seems probable to us, given that scenario, that the wound was in the rib cavity behind the breastbone and adjacent to the thoracic vertebra, and well away from the abdominal midline.

Although the side of the body in which he was wounded was not specified by John, it traditionally has been depicted on the right side. It was probably the right side because a large flow of blood would be more likely with a perforation of the distended and thin-walled right atrium than the thick-walled and contracted left ventricle. Although the location of the wound may never be known with certainty, the right side seems more probable than the left for the reasons we outlined above.

In all due respect, some of the skepticism in accepting John’s account stems from the difficulty in explaining, with medical accuracy, the flow of both the blood and water. Part of this difficulty is based on the assumption that blood appeared first, and then the water. However, in the ancient Greek texts, it seems likely that the writer of John’s Gospel was emphasizing the prominence of blood and not its appearance preceding the water.

If you’ll allow us a few more ‘side ways’ comments: The water probably was serous pleural effusion (the fluid-filled space that surrounds the lungs) and amber-colored pericardial fluid. That means it would have preceded the flow of blood and would have been smaller in volume than the blood. What’s more, because of his impending acute heart failure, pleural and pericardial effusions may have developed and would have added to the volume of the apparent loss of water. Also, the blood, may have come from the right atrium, the right ventricle, or perhaps from hemoperieardium (blood in the pericardial sac of the heart).

Many scholars believe that Jesus died of cardiac rupture. Clearly, the weight of historical and medical conjecture indicates that Jesus was dead before the wound to his side was inflicted. And that seems to support the traditional view that the spear, thrust between his right ribs, probably perforated not only the right lung but also the pericardium and heart, which would have ensured his death.

 

A MetaSpiritual Interpretation

We’d like to cover one more point before we conclude this spear-piercing snapshot. From a purely pragmatic and mechanical standpoint, the centurion used his spear to pierce the side of the itinerate preacher to make sure Jesus would die sooner. However, from a deeply spiritually and allegorical perspective, we’re going to elaborate on the promise we mentioned earlier about the ‘first couple’ which we believe ties the spear-piercing myth to the Adam and Eve myth.

According to Jewish tradition, Eve was produced from Adam’s rib. However, allegorically speaking, we believe it means that all creation occurs when the Cosmic Life Force (Spirit’s vertical dimension) descends into matter (the horizontal dimension) and forms a right angle at the point where the two meet.

Man silhouette forming a cross

The result of this cosmic penetration is symbolized by the human skeleton, which features the spinal column and the ribs that are at right angles at their juncture. (When you stand straight with your legs together and your arms extended shoulder level high, your body is in the shape of a cross). Eve, representing universal feminine energy, is formed (set free) when the horizontal arm (rib) of the allegorical cross meets the descending energy of Spirit.

We can extend this allegory by suggesting that the spear represents a second horizontal influence, which is the product of a self-aggrandizing ego that wants to ensure its temporal rulership. It wants to make sure that not only our spiritual dimension dies but the dynamic dimension of the eternal feminine energies will be prevented from being released as they were at the ‘birth’ of Eve.

Since we first arrived on the planet, our extremely paranoid egocentric nature has sought to silence both our divine impulses and our highly intuitive Eve qualities which epitomize the heart-centered awareness that symbolize the highly nurturing, wisdom-centered, keenly subjective, unconditional love-oriented, right-brained, social and emotive nature of our make-up.

Our unenlightened ego, which is the product of our descent into matter, wants to repress our Divine Nature and keep our heart energies subordinate to our intellect. The spear (the piercing nature of our self-aggrandizement) in our side is the recalcitrant ego’s weapon of choice to ensure its dominance over our human personality. However, the same story surfaces in every faith tradition – the transforming power of our Heart Center and the resurrecting power of our Divine Nature will prevail!

We affirm you truly can overcome the metaphorical spear which tries to deny your Divinity! You have the power of choice, along with your dominion over the world of appearance, to transform your experience and resurrect your Divine Nature as you achieve Enlightenment! This is the message of Easter, and our call to action — as we walk the spiritual path on practical feet!

Easter-Lilies

 

 

© 2016 Bil and Cher Holton, YourSpiritualPractice.com

Photo credits, used with permission:
© Graphicstock.com
© Clipart.com
© Graphicstock.com
© gettyimages.com

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OM Oomph as a Spiritual Practice

Om-symbol-dreamstime_xs_10531487OM is a sacred sound (mantra) of great importance in many Eastern religions. OM represents the primordial abstract, absolute space that is beyond attributes or forms, yet is the origin of everything. Thus Om mystically embodies the essence of the entire universe.

The syllable Om is composed of three sounds a-u-m. In Sanskrit, the vowels a and u combine to become o and the symbol’s threefold nature is central to its meaning. According to Hindu tradition, OM represents three important triads:

– The three worlds: earth, atmosphere, and heaven
– The three major Hindu gods: Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva
– The three sacred Vedic scriptures: Rg, Yajur, and Sama

These meanings are further deepened by the Hindu philosophical belief that Brahman first created sound and the universe arose from it. As the most sacred sound, Om underwrites the universe and everything that exists and it continues to hold everything together.Med-6

Here’s How This Practice Works: Start every mantra, prayer,  meditation, and affirmation with OM. Uttering the very syllable OM guarantees results because we elevate our consciousness to an octave that connects with the Field of Infinite Potential. The sound (vibration) of our thoughts is the amperage (oomph) we need to manifest what we want from the unmanifest.

Esoterically, this mantra is vocalized AUM or AOM. AUM is the bow, the arrow is the Self, and Brahman (the Absolute Reality) is said to be the mark. When we say AOM our mouth is opened with the A; it is rounded with the O and closed with the M. According to Hindu tradition, the A sound engenders everything, the O sound gestates everything, and everything is born with the M sound. You can literally feel the vibration throughout your entire body.

Om symbolYou might also find this interesting about threefold nature of the OM symbol: OM or AUM consists of three curves, one semicircle, and a dot.

  • The large lower curve symbolizes our waking state which is influenced by the five physical senses.
  • The upper curve denotes the state of deep sleep of our subconsciousness.
  • The middle curve symbolizes our dream state.
  • The semi circle symbolizes the illusion of maya and separates the dot from the other three curves. Maya prevents us from the realization of our highest state of bliss. The semi circle is open at the top, and doesn’t touch the dot. This means that this highest state is not affected by maya which only affects the manifested universe.
  • The dot signifies a blissful state of consciousness and is the ultimate aim of all spiritual growth.

There is a nuance we’d like to share about using OM. It is the sacred fourth dimensional ‘sound of silence’ that follows uttering OM. It represents the omnipresence of oneness and universality that epitomizes the very nature of the universe. It reminds us that each of us are particularizations of that oneness and unity. We are not separate from it.

The Upanishads say that OM is Brahman in the form of sound. We agree. And we would add that we humans are the Eternal Presence in the form of us. So, we invite you to use OM as the first word you say in your affirmations, prayers, mantras, and meditations. The OM sound will connect you to the ‘Field of Infinite Potential’ which will guarantee the results you want by right of consciousness … as you walk the spiritual path on practical feet!

Check out our membership site for more spiritual enrichment and community!

© 2012, 2015 Bil and Cher Holton, YourSpiritualPractice.com

Photo credits, with permission:
© TMarchev | Dreamstime.com
   © graphicstock.com

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Love Potion 3:16

LovePotion3-16-gs_7ksSlI_L copy copyFebruary seems to be a month that focuses on love, so we thought a special blog article about love would be perfect! But we want to emphasize a special kind of love: loving yourself! We are totally convinced that it is a whole lot easier to love other people than it is to love ourselves! Ever notice how often we just cut ourselves down, find every little thing wrong, and never give ourselves credit for who we are? Even when someone compliments us, what is the usual tendency? For example, someone says: What a great looking sweater! We reply: Oh, this old thing? You’ve got to be kidding! I was thinking of giving it to Good Will! Talk about a slap in the face of the person giving the compliment!

If we could even begin to grasp the incredible Truth of who we really are, there would be no way we could ever put ourselves down again! Our job — our challenge — our ADVENTURE — as Truth students and Truth practitioners, is to look beyond the outer appearance . . . to really look deep into the depths of the Truth of who we are, and claim our Divinity. Because if we aren’t loving who we are, it’s really tough to be sending love out to others.

Do you remember the song Love Potion #9? (We are probably dating ourselves, but take a listen and we bet you’ll remember hearing it somewhere!) We’ve decided to use it conceptually to guide us through this blog post — but we have changed the name to Love Potion 3:16 — based on the scripture verse John 3:16. This portion of scripture is the most quoted passage of the Bible. No other scripture comes close. You even see people holding up signs referencing it at televised ball games! We have a new and different perspective of what this verse REALLY means — a MetaSpiritual perspective!

John 3:16 says, in its most popular literal translation: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.”

We believe this is the most quoted scripture because it connects with us at the core of our being. It connects with us at such a depth that we intuitively, automatically, instinctively sense its immense importance – even if we’re not aware of its full meaning. Here’s our MetaSpiritual interpretation:

God, the Field of Infinite Potential, is Divine Love manifested as the Christ Principle (Only Begotten Son) within each of us. As we come into that awareness of our Oneness (believeth), we move beyond the illusion of separation and duality (shall not perish) and continue to expand our Infinite Potential as we become more enlightened. (Love Potion 3:16)

Love Potion 3:16 reminds us how important it is to come into that awareness of ourselves as Divine, as worthy — to move beyond the illusion of separation, and stay connected with our Christ Nature! So how do we do that?

Three Practical Tips:

Here are three quick tips ~ and, appropriately for the month of love, they are all about loving YOURSELF!

#1: Love yourself enough to set Personal Boundaries

person-heart-webSo often we allow everyone else’s needs, demands, and schedules to take priority over what we need and want for ourselves. And we end up feeling frustrated, resentful, and exhausted … which is NOT the way we are meant to feel!

Even Jesus set those boundaries for Himself: He would go apart at specific times, when He knew He needed to rejuvenate Himself — and He made no excuses for it! He claimed the time He needed for Himself. We, too, need to set Personal Boundaries for ourselves — boundaries that honor our inner peace, our gifts, our health. Setting your personal boundaries will connect you with the inner core of who you really are, and allow your light to really shine!

#2: Love yourself enough to conduct Positive Pep Rallies

ExcitedPerson-male-web-ca36237164We must become aware of how we are talking to ourselves! Do you realize how often you are repeating negative, self-deprecating things to yourself? And what we say gets embedded in our consciousness, and even into our subconscious.

For example, when we came up with the idea of a blog based on a take off of Love Potion #9, Cher immediately — without even thinking about it — sang the entire song, and got every word perfect! And we are pretty sure we haven’t sung that song for 20 years! Just proves that what we say a lot sticks! So we want to become very aware of what we are saying about ourselves.

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: when we talk negatively about ourselves, it actually is blasphemy! Because we are Divine — we are God expressing — so when we call ourselves stupid, we are calling God, Divine Essence, Source stupid! So let’s get a grip and get it right!

Here’s a great spiritual adventure ~ conduct personal pep rallies! Each morning, pick some attribute about yourself, and create a positive affirmation around it. (I am expressing my inner beauty to the world. I am filled with enthusiasm and energy to do all that is mine to do. I am calm and patient with everyone I meet. I am incredibly healthy. I love and accept my body completely!) This is particularly powerful if you take something you normally criticize yourself about. Then, throughout the day, have a Personal Pep rally where you repeat that affirmation over and over, with enthusiasm and intensity! You are honoring the Truth of who you are, and you will actually see a difference in how you experience this amazing thing called life!

#3: Love yourself enough to create your own Portable Self Care Kit

selfcare-kit-webThis can really be fun! What we are encouraging you to do is pack up your own little kit of self care, so you can always be present to and mindful of the Truth of who you are. This kit can vary, depending on who you are and where you are going. For example, Cher likes to carry a special 12-Powers stone in her jacket pocket. When she sticks her hands in her pocket and feels that stone, it is a warm and gentle reminder of her 12 Powers — and she affirms that all her Powers are quickened in that moment. Another example: we have a friend who loads up his iPod with meditation music and inspiring podcasts to listen to as he commutes to work. You can include affirmation cards, special pictures, a small aroma-therapy bottle; it could be special apps on your smartphone (i.e., a bell tone every hour to remind you to breathe, a meditation app; upbeat positive music, etc.)

Think about what you could carry around with you (without feeling burdened) that serves as a constant reminder of how special and worthy you are.

BONUS TIP: Love yourself enough to schedule Permanent Trips to Headquarters ~ to renew your spirit and reconnect with your Oneness.

For Fun:

music_10064396-031914Here’s our rewrite of Love Potion #9, written from a MetaSpiritual perspective. You can sing it to the tune of Love Potion #9.

Love Potion 3:16

I made a list of all that’s wrong with me —
That list was longer than the eye could see —
But when my time at Headquarters convened
I got a little lesson in …
Love Potion 3:16.

I tried to justify my lack of faith
And why my self talk seemed to cause such ache –
But then in the Silence something intervened
And said, “What you need is …
Love Potion 3:16.”

From deep down within me I sensed a rush of light
I knew in that moment that everything was right.
I had no separation, felt incredible ease
I took a breath, I closed my eyes, I drank in peace!

I didn’t know if it was day or night —
I just felt love for everything in sight —
I’ve never been the same and it’s very plain to see
The Truth of who I am is …
Love Potion 3:16!

So this week, take a healthy dose of Love Potion #316 and remind yourself that You Are Worthy & you are connected, as you walk the spiritual path on practical feet.

© Bil & Cher Holton  (Check out our Online community for people who are more spiritual than religious!)

Lyrics credit:
Original lyrics Love Potion #9: Jerry Leiber & Mike Stoller
Revised lyrics: Cher Holton
Photo Credits (used with permission):
© graphicstock.com (1 & 2)
© clipart.com
© cherholton and clipart.com
© graphicstock.com

 

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It’s a Cold Day in Hell

 

hoar-frost on trees in winter

As we emerge from the Blizzard of 2016, we thought it might be appropriate to write a blog about a cold day in Hell! When you hear someone say, “It will be a cold day in Hell before something happens, it generally means that the chances of that something happening are absolutely impossible or highly unlikely to happen. The operative sentiment is: it’s NEVER going to happen!

The other two idioms similar to ‘a cold day in hell’ that express the same sentiments are: ‘When hell freezes over,’* and ‘Not a snowball’s chance in hell.’

The original ‘cold day in hell’ idiomatic expression is believed to have originated sometime in the late 19th century in America, perhaps around 1888 or 1889. Its etymology is ‘cold natured’ so etymologists haven’t gotten warm enough to pin point its origins. (Now we’re messing with you!)

Some fairly common ‘cold day in hell’ expressions you’ve probably heard are:

  • “It’ll be a cold day in hell before I return his calls.”
  • “It’ll be a cold day in hell before I forgive what they’ve done.”
  • “It’ll be a cold day in hell before I go out with him again.”
  • “It’ll be a cold day in hell before I trust you again.”
  • “It’ll be a cold day in hell before I win the lottery.”

What’s interesting about all of these ‘cold day in hell’ sentiments is that they all imply that ‘hell’ is a place, a place regarded in many mainstream religious traditions as a realm of evil and suffering. It is often traditionally depicted as a place of perpetual fire beneath the surface of the earth where the wicked are punished after death.hell-dreamstime_xs_38766543

The word ‘hell’ is mentioned fifty-five times in the Bible and is depicted as a hellish place characterized by fire, eternal punishment, death, torment and anguish, misery, and wickedness. It’s seen as a place you don’t want to go – and don’t want your loved ones to go. It is an incinerator of suffering! A crematory of anguish! An abode of super-heated agony with fiery temperatures off the charts!

Cooler climates are not expected there. There is no air-conditioning. Nor will there ever be, as we have been taught. It is a place of perpetual burning. So, snowballs in hell, ice-cream and frozen custard, snow cones, iced tea and iced coffee, and popsicles are out of the question. Ice skating, ice fishing, ice hockey and snow skiing are, too! It would be a ‘cold day in hell’ before you enjoyed those things down there!

The notion of this kind of hell has been popular for centuries. If you happen to have been brought up in a traditional Christian home, chances are this kind of ‘hell’ was passed on to you at a very early age. You have been led to believe that this futuristic, end of life state, and otherworldly place is located in some sinister other-worldly realm below the earth.

If it was, and if it is still your dominant belief about hell — and its oven-like qualities — we invite you to suspend that belief as soon as possible. (And we believe it doesn’t have to be a ‘cold day in hell’ before you outgrow that Neanderthal concept)!

All that we have mentioned above in this blogcast comes to this: What if hell isn’t a physical place at all, but a state of consciousness? What if hell isn’t a geographical location ruled by a red-garbed being with horns, tail and pitchfork, where people scream in agony and are tortured endlessly in eternal flames?

HellStateOfConsciousness-dt_31820845-CherHere’s the thing — because hell is a state of consciousness (a hellish one, we might add) that can be described as a state of mind that retails suffering, torment, anguish, misery, wickedness, hatefulness, violence, denial of our innate divinity, deceitfulness, and disrespect for others — we can cool off those divisive thoughts and hellish inclinations so there can be ‘cold days in hell.’

As a matter of fact, we can create so many ‘cold days in hell’ that we can cool hell off once and for all! Metaphysically, a ‘day’ represents an ‘enlightened spiritual thought’ and ‘hell’ symbolizes a ‘consciousness that denies our innate divinity.’ So, you see, when you allow an enlightened spiritual thought to enter a hellish state of consciousness, it cools off a violent disposition. It cools off deceitfulness and disrespect shown to others. It cools off divisiveness and hatred.

  • When we create Nobel Prizes for loving kindness, compassion, and unconditional love shown to others…
  • When we choose, as a human species, to end violence and war, in all of their forms…
  • When we put people before profits…
  • When we choose to end world hunger and put an end to irresponsible drug use…
  • When we decide once and for all to respect the dignity of all people regardless of their age, disability, national origin, color, religion, lifestyle orientation and gender…
  • When we treat women as the equals they are…
  • When we create peace on earth…

We will be able to say unequivocally and with a clear conscience…

FINALLY, IT’S A COLD DAY IN HELL … each time we achieve one of these long-awaited-for improvements in human nature!

So today, make it a cold day in hell by making a conscious choice about your state of consciousness — as you walk the spiritual path on practical feet.

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*As a side note, it’s a fact that Hell — which is between Flint and Ann Arbor, Michigan — froze over in 2004. (There is a Hell, California located near Interstate 10 which was built in 1964. Hell, CA was founded ten years earlier in 1954 by Charles Carr. Of course, since Carr’s Hell is a desert town, it’ll be a ‘cold day in Hell if that Hell freezes over.)

© Revs. Drs. Bil & Cher Holton, Global Center for Spiritual Practices

Photo credits, with permission:
© cherholton, (with credit to graphicstock.com)
© Constantin Opris | Dreamstime.comHell fire
©
cherholton (with credit to © Zsschreiner | Dreamstime.com)
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What Do the People, Places, and Things from the Nativity Mean…From a Spiritual Perspective?

NativitySilhouette-ca109121061-web

The Christmas story is a beautiful story. But it’s not just about a Jewish child born in a manger to Joseph and Mary a little over 2,000 years ago in a little town called Bethlehem.

Christmas represents the birth of our awareness that the Christ Presence has expressed Itself as us in human form. And like Jesus, we can grow
into our conscious Christhood by following the same inner compass
He used to find his way Home.

We believe humankind’s unwillingness to embrace this truth has caused us to miss many opportunities for both inner peace and world peace. We’ve missed the true purpose of our lives— which is to be the best Christ we can be. We’ve neglected the true meaning of Christmas.

The most inconvenient spiritual truth of all time is … Are you ready for the best answer we can offer? Take a deep breath. If you’re sitting near a loved one you may want to hold each other’s hand. If you’re by yourself, you may want to fasten your seatbelt!

The most inconvenient spiritual truth of all time is this: The Only Begotten Son born in a manger to Joseph and Mary is the same Only Begotten Son born in each of us. It is the Christ Presence within us. It is the Planetary Christ expressing Itself in human form as each and every one of us!

The Christmas story is our story. It is the drama of the birth of our awakening to the Truth that we are the Christ expressing at the point of us. Metaphysically, it represents a transformation in consciousness. It is a moment of enlightenment, an interior journey of the growing awareness of our unfolding Christhood.

HollyDivider

What follows is a metaphysical snapshot of that spiritual unfoldment. Metaphysically speaking, all of the people, places, and events in the Bible represent qualities, traits, habits, and abilities within us. We hope you’ll like our MetaSpiritual treatment of the Christmas story:

Census:  A time when all of the beliefs, values, and assumptions gained from sense consciousness are called into account through our personal introspection

Inn:  Represents the unenlightened intellect which has no room for higher spiritual insights 

Cave:  The womb-like mystery of life which gives birth to form

Manger:   Represents baser human emotions associated with our human personality

Swaddling Clothes: The confinement and limitations imposed by physicality

Nazareth:   State of awareness in which we center our thoughts on spiritual things instead of material things

Galilee:  Subconscious feelings and emotions which sense evolving truths

Bethlehem: The abiding place (our heart) of Universal Substance (bread)

Jerusalem:  State of inner peace, a consciousness filled with the peace which passes all misunderstanding

Judah (Judea): Acknowledgement of our oneness with our God Essence, the Eternal Presence

Egypt:  Coma consciousness (sense or material consciousness)

Mary: Represents our pure, maternal, and superior intuition which is unequivocally open and receptive to Divine Ideas

Joseph: Represents our dutiful and trusting intellect which is characterized by superior wisdom and understanding. The intellect finds it difficult to give birth to divine ideas, it can only protect them and nurture them through disciplined spiritual practice

Elizabeth:  Mature spiritual unfoldment characterized by faith, trust, love, and confidence in intuitive promptings

Zechariah: Attuned intellectual understanding that evidences our becoming aware of the deeper spiritual implications of religious teachings

Infant John (later known as John the Baptizer): Growing moral awareness of our need to prepare ourselves and others for responsible spiritual growth

Angels: Higher thoughts, insights, and inclinations which come from a consciousness grounded in Truth principles

Gabriel: Spiritual discernment which allows our Divine Nature to guide us

Christ Child: The birth of the Christ Pattern (the infant Christ Nature) in us

Shepherds: The humble, trustworthy, natural thoughts we have that watch over our good and obedient intentions (sheep)

 Animals (Donkey, Ox, Sheep, Lamb, Dove, etc.):
   – donkey: Humility, courage, persistence;

   – ox: infusion of cosmic and spiritual forces;
   – sheep: obedient intentions;
   – lamb: purity, innocence, harmlessness;
   – camel: strength, endurance, and perseverance;
   – turtledove: fidelity, love;
   – dove: purity, gentleness and peace 

Wise Men:  The esoteric knowledge and superior spiritual insights that make us open and receptive to our Christ Nature

 Herod: Our egocentric willfulness characterized by its paranoia and material aggrandizements

 East: That ‘state of higher consciousness’ within us — Headquarters

 Star: The spark of precognition (universal knowing) within us that prompts our receptivity to our divine nature

 Gold: Our ability to transform material consciousness into spiritual awareness so that our possessions do not possess us

Frankincense: Affirmative prayer and meditation which lift us above worldly concerns

 Myrrh: Letting go of anything which is no longer needed for our higher good

Simeon: Our intellectual openness to the truth that our real self is the Christ Self

 Anna: Our emotional readiness to subordinate our human personality to our Christ individuality

Virgin Birth: Represents the undefiled and purified stillness of mind in us which gives birth to our awareness of the Christ Pattern (For an in-depth article about the Virgin Birth, including a history of virgin births and our MetaSpiritual interpretation, see our blog article: metaphysicalbible.wordpress.com/2015/12/20/what-does-the-virgin-birth-mean-from-a-spiritual-perspective/ )

 Immaculate Conception: When our intuitive intelligence, love, and receptivity to our innate divinity are raised to their highest and purest spiritual essences, we immaculately conceive a pure, inviolate Christed Idea.

 Nativity Event:   When we reach a certain stage of spiritual development, our divinely-inspired intuitive abilities spring into action (immaculately conceive) because of our new born Christ awareness (virgin birth).

 As you meditate on this interpretation of the people, places, and things associated with the Nativity, what does Christmas mean to you? Scroll down to the “Leave a Reply section, and share your 1-2 sentence description of the meaning of Christmas, from your heart!

Blessings for a Merry Christmas!

P.S. Be sure to visit our Spiritual Cyber Home Membership Site and be part of our online spiritual tribe! YourSpiritualPractice.com/members

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