A Lived Connection to Source

We are all of the same Source copy

In last week’s post I asked, “How can we feel (our) connection to divinity… so it becomes something we know experientially; a subtle but living presence within that we live and breathe in everything we do?”

Taking as my starting point an understanding of the divine as the Source energy and consciousness behind all that is, the key things that came up for me from delving into this question were that it is when we are heart-centered and fully present in the now moment that we tangibly experience this kind of felt-connection to our Source.

In the same post I very briefly touched on some of the morning practices I do that allow me to access this sense of felt-connection. Today I’d like to explore some other practices I’ve put in place that I feel are key in helping me to experience connection with Source as a real and tangible presence in my life.

While my morning practices help to frame my mindset for the day, I’m of the opinion that setting aside a specific chunk time for our ‘spiritual practice’ does not really serve us. Sure it’s better than doing nothing at all; but by doing so, even with the best of intentions, we may create a separate ‘spiritual self’ – and this can unwittingly result in the division of our day into times when we’re being that ‘spiritual self’ and times when we’re not.

As the reality of our connection to Source is ever-present, why would we choose to ‘tune into’ it only at set-aside times when we could instead choose to experience a felt-sense of that connection all day long?

Seen in this light, whether we have a longer period of time also set aside or not, short and frequent bursts of ‘connecting in’ throughout the day seem to me to be the way to most consistently experience a sense of felt-connection to Source; as well as a means of bringing about the integration of our ‘spiritual nature’ into our ‘human nature,’ dissolving the false dichotomy.

Doing a yoga pose or sitting in the traditional meditation posture in the middle of the office might not cut it in today’s secular world, so I’m choosing to focus on practices that can be easily incorporated throughout the day without drawing unwanted attention to oneself.

One of the things that came up in last week’s post was that felt-connection will be experienced as a reality more readily when there is a sense of two-way communication with the Universe, so I’m choosing to first focus on the speaking and listening sides of communication in turn; then on connecting in with the soul – our bridge to Source; and to end with some ideas for bringing yourself fully into the present moment.

While I hope the concrete nature of the practices will be useful for some – giving specific ideas for practices that can be integrated into your days and weeks right away, I’m very conscious of the fact that just because something works for me doesn’t mean it will work for you.

My suggestion to anyone who wants to open up into a deeper sense of felt-connection with Source would be to ask Source to show you the optimum way of connecting in for you. Take some or all of these practices as a starting point and try integrating them into your day or week. Also try out variations and other practices you’re drawn to. Observe how the practices work for you – which ones give you the sense of felt-connection that you’re looking for and which ones don’t?  Keep what works for you and discard the rest. Our connection to Source is experienced differently for each of us and the only things worth spending your time and energy on are the ones that work for you.

I believe that Source responds in kind to our intentions. When we show our commitment to connect with Source the path opens up before us and the tools and resources we need flow into our lives, leading us to what works for us. All we need to do is to have an open heart and mind, be ready and open to receive what flows into our lives, and to follow the signs; always trusting that we’ll be given everything we need to grow and expand in just the right design and timing for who we are.

As we experience this to be true, our trust and belief expand into knowing. Not only do we know, on an experiential level, the truth of our connection to Source; we come to know ourselves as Source in human form. Only with this understanding can we truly know ourselves as the sole authority in our lives. And it is when we embrace this that we open the door to conscious co-creation with the Universe.

I leave you today with some of my favourite practices…

Opening up a connection:

  • Ask for the connection you desire. I like to say quietly or silently to myself, “I’m now connecting to the divine within and the divine without, which are one and the same and all that is.” These words open me up into a space of conscious connection with Source and can be said at the start of a time of prayer or meditaiton, or, simply, in a brief moment of stillness in a busy day. They serve the dual purpose of reminding us of the truth of who we are, and making our intention to connect in known to the Universe.
  • Take this one step further and ask for the specific answers you desire. Open up a space of conscious connection in whatever way works best for you, and then make your question known by speaking it aloud or in your heart. The answer might not come to you straight away, but trust that is on its way. (More thoughts on how we may receive these answers below).
  • Use your breath to bring yourself into the present moment and activate a sense of felt-connection to the Universe. By far the most effective breath work I’ve found to do this involves imagining your body as a tube that is open at both ends, connecting you to the Universe in the form of the earth below and the heavens above. On alternate inhales breathe the supportive energies of the earth and the heavens into your body – it helps if you visualise yourself drawing this energy into your body. On your exhales imagine these energies merging in your body and filling your entire energy field with their supportive presence. In this way you not only connect with Source, but invite its supportive energies into your life.

Being on the receiving end of the connection:

  • Be on the lookout for signs and messages from the Universe. This one is ongoing throughout the day, but doesn’t require you to do anything other than cultivate an openness of mind that accepts that the Universe can and will communicate with you, and bring a heightened awareness to the things that are happening around you. Pay particular attention to things that you notice coming up twice or more, and things that appear to be answers to questions that you have asked.
  • Learn to recognise and trust your intuition, which is said to be the superconscious (otherwise known as Source) directly communicating with us. It’s easier for our intuition to communicate with us when our left brains are quiet and still; so meditation, nature walks and other activities that help reduce brain chatter are all good practices to incorporate into your day; but equally your intuition may speak to you when you’re naturally relaxed and open without you having even tried to create a conscious connection, such as when you’re daydreaming, in the shower, or completely focused on doing something you love.  ‘Listen’ for what floats up to the surface when you are in this quiet space – again, pay special attention to anything that seems like it might be an answer to a specific question you have been asking.
  • Get in the practice of pausing throughout the day to listen to your heart and connect in with its desires. Acknowledge them all and act on the ones you can. It is said that the divine speaks to us through our intuition and our most heartfelt desires. Rediscover your true nature by looking deeply into your heart and having the courage to be fearlessly honest with yourself; what is it that awakens your passion and makes your heart sing? What is it that brings a sense of peace and contentment to the innermost place within your heart? These are the things you want to be doing more of. As much as you can, release the rest from your life.

Living a soul-centered life:

  • Deepen into your relationship with your soul. Our soul is the bridge between us and Source and, if we can learn to listen to it, is always guiding us home to the truth of who and what we are. A practice I have found very helpful is to ‘dialog’ with my soul to feel into my most deeply felt desires. I like to do it on a Sunday night or a Monday morning, so I’m clear on my focus and intentions for the week ahead. I get quiet and consciously connect in. Then I ask my soul what its priorities are in different areas of my life; ranging from my relationships with others to my living space, and a whole host of others in-between. I write these in a notebook. Then all I need to do is read them through a couple of times during the week to quickly and easily bring myself back into alignment.
  • Stay soul-centered by setting your intention to be in alignment with your soul’s desires at the start of each day.

Being present in the now moment:

  • Simply and literally focus on your breath. Pause in what you are doing for a moment and bring all of your attention to your breathing; consciously slowing down both your inhalations and your exhalations. We can only breathe in the present moment, so focusing on the breath is a sure way to bring ourselves there.
  • Deepen into your experience of the now moment through your senses. I love this practice because it doubles up as a gratitude ritual. I simply focus on each of my senses in turn and notice what, in the present moment, is giving me pleasure. For example, if I’m out walking my dog, I might notice/bring my attention to the snow-capped mountains for the sense of sight; the bracing fresh air for the sense of smell; the sound of the river for the sense of hearing; and the feel of the wind in my hair for the sense of touch.
  • Look at your world with eyes and a heart that see. Really look at and notice what is in the physical environment around you; you can only do this when your mind is still and you’re present in the now moment. Imagine sometimes that you’re seeing everything with ‘fresh eyes’ and look at it as keenly as you would if you were seeing it for the first time; when you do this you can’t help but notice the wonder, mystery and miracle of life of all that is around you. Another variation I like to do is to remind myself that I am one with all I see; a unique expression of the beauty and perfection of Source just as everything around me is. Doing this not only brings me into the present moment, it also affirms that I am one with Source and in an ever-present state of connection, reminding me of the truth of my being.

Have you tried any of these or similar practices before and how have they worked for you? What are your favourite ways to deepen into a felt-connection to Source? How do you experience your connection to Source? I’d love to hear your thoughts below.

Wishing you a day of deeply felt connection.

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Our Connection to Divinity

door-and-key

My ‘Stats Page’ revealed to me last week, that somebody had found and read my blog post Being In The World, But Not Of It (https://delvingdeepwithin.wordpress.com/2014/11/27/being-in-the-world-but-not-of-it/) via a search engine. While it was a nice surprise to learn that friends on my Facebook page and the occasional blogger here are not the only people to read it, the search terms they used – “maintaining your connection to divinity in the world” – did make me wonder if they had found an answer to their question in my post or not…

I thought probably not.

It was one of my more reflective posts. And I’m pretty sure that if I were to put something like that in a search engine, I’d be on the lookout for practical ideas that I could apply in my own life. So that is my hope today – to explore some tangible ways we can maintain our connection to divinity as we walk in the world. And in doing so I also hope to open myself up to receive greater understanding.

Before exploring how to sustain a connection to divinity, I feel I first need an understanding of what divinity actually means to me.

Trying to express this in words is in itself a challenge – the divine is, by its very nature, limitless and therefore beyond our limited conceptions and understanding. For me, at this stage in my journey, ‘God’ or ‘the Divine’ is Source energy –  the creative life-force energy and consciousness behind everything in the Universe; the creator of all that is. We have been birthed forth from this creative life-force energy and it is what now in this very moment animates and sustains us; so we also contain this divinity within. It is both the stuff we are made of and the divine spark of life at the centre of our being; and so we are always not only connected to but actively embodying divinity, whether we are conscious of it or not.

From this understanding the question becomes not so much, “How can we maintain our connection to divinity in the world?;” but “How can we maintain our connection to divinity more consciously?”

As we are sentient beings who create our experiences of the world through our thoughts and feelings, for me the question also becomes, “How can we feel this connection to divinity as intensely as the sun’s warmth on our skin, so it becomes something we know experientially; a subtle but living presence within that we live and breathe in everything we do?” A purely intellectual understanding of our connection to all that is can never awaken this kind of ‘knowing’ within us – and while we don’t need to feel the connection for it to be true, it is true that doing so deepens our experience of it.

I think two of the keys that open the door to this kind of felt-awareness of our connection to divinity are the desire to have the experience of it and the belief that it is possible. Not just for those who we feel are further along the path of enlightenment and somehow worthier than us of such aspirations; but also for me, here, now. We are all equal in the eyes of the Universe – life makes no distinctions between us. This means that if it’s possible for someone else, it’s also possible for me. An experiential connection to divinity isn’t reserved for spiritual gurus and leaders; it is the birthright of us all. All we need to do is to step up and claim it.

This is where desire comes in. Everything is born of our desire. What we desire to experience in our lives and keep our focus and attention on is what we receive. So simply by having a genuine and heartfelt desire to consciously sustain a felt connection to divinity, we open up the gates for this to happen.

Focus and attention are another two keys – they help us keep our desire activated so that it doesn’t waver and falter and end up resigned to a wishy-washy ‘one of these days’ backwater of our being.

I’m sure you’ve heard it said as often as I have that what we put our focus and attention on grows. So when we make the conscious choice to think, speak and act in ways that reinforce our connection to divinity – both the divinity within and the ‘all that is’ that comprises the divinity without – it’s only natural that this connection is more experientially felt and known.

As to the practicalities of how to hone our focus and attention in this way, I think different things work for different people.

I like to have some practices in place as they help me be more consistent – and consistency is the  next key. How can we expect to maintain a felt sense of our connection to divinity if we aren’t consistent in the affirming of it through our thoughts, word and actions? Although this connection is ever-present, if we rarely do anything to “tune in” we limit our ability to experience it – much as we can have wi-fi throughout our entire house, but are only able to know this experientially when we use a device that initiates a connection to it.

I like to take time to consciously ‘connect in’ on waking – it helps me start my day in the way I wish to go on. I start with an offering of gratitude – for the fresh new day and for the life that I am in it; and also do a grounding exercise, some breath work and a short meditation-like exercise to fill myself with the purest essence of me. I also set my intention to receive the wisdom of my higher self throughout the day and to be in alignment with my soul’s desires. Setting intentions is yet another key that helps us consolidate our desires and communicate them to the Universe; thereby opening ourselves up to receive its support. After breakfast I walk with my dog, absorbing the beauty of the nature all around and affirming my oneness with it.

These things help me feel centred; part of something that is both greater than I am and yet that somehow simultaneously I am; and connected to my heart. And it is from this heart-centered space that I’m more able to consciously embody both my authentic self free of any masks and the qualities that we commonly associate with the divine – such as love and compassion for self and others, gratitude, wisdom and kindness – as I  move through my day.

I feel this heart-centered state of being is a large part of what we mean when we speak of ‘maintaining our connection to divinity.’ Revealing as it may be as to how we still locate our sense of self in terms of polarity, we are voicing a genuine (and worthy) desire to express the highest qualities of our being, and to interact with the people and things in our world from this heart-centred space.

I think another part of what we mean when we talk of maintaining our connection to divinity is our yearning to be in a constant state of communicative flow with the Universe – the kind of two-sided communication where we’re not only expressing our gratitude and desires; but are also on the receiving end of communications as well. Again, I think this is something that is open to all of us. It is my belief that the Universe is communicating with all of us all of the time – through the voices of the people we meet; the words we read in books or on the Internet; the repeating patterns we see in our lives; the signs and symbols we see in nature; the synchronicites we encounter as we move through our lives… Also through our heart-space – through the desires that bubble up unbidden; the peaceful feeling of quiet and stillness that tells us that we are on path and all is well; the quiet intuitions and knowings that we feel deep within our hearts… If we can only open up our hearts and consciousness into a more expansive awareness, we become more receptive; and the more receptive we are, the more of these communications can get through.

So another key to maintaining a connection to divinity seems to lie in our being able to maintain a heart-centered consciousness.

Until we are far enough along our path that it becomes our natural state of being to be present and heart-centered in this way it is helpful, I believe, to create some time each day without distractions when we can consciously ‘connect in’ with ourselves and all that is and come into this heart-centered space. I use my morning practices to do this, but countless variations exist – gardening, journaling, time spent with pets, tai chi, contemplative reading, painting, meditation, time spent in nature, running, yoga, time spent absorbing the beauty of a piece of art… all of these things and many more offer a way to ‘connect in.’

I don’t think there is one right answer or even one ‘correct’ way of connecting in – sometimes I like to do something that makes me feel vigorously alive and grateful for the life that courses through my veins; and other times I like to do something that takes me to a place of deep peace, quiet and stillness. Both of these states of being awaken in me a state of heart-centeredness and bring me fully into the present.

I think that what is key is that whatever our practice is it helps us to set our mind free for a while from the constant barrage of thoughts, and brings us fully into the present moment. It’s only in the present moment that we can fully connect to anything, and it is in this experience of our beingness that our connection to divinity is experientially felt. As we release all thoughts of past and future and focus on the now we naturally come into our heart space and are reminded of all that we are – alive, present, complete; the eternal breath of life in human form.