Image description: Mom, my new little sister, and me in 1951, South Gate CA
[Classic post from 5-8-16]
Happy Mothers Day to all mothers. I was thinking about my mother this morning. She passed five years ago at 80, and I am certain that she has found her joy. As I was thinking about her and my childhood and then seeing the quote above from Gabrielle Bernstein, I thought, this is what I would have loved to have learned from her. Instead, I learned it much later from others.
In looking back, I can see how my mother and father chose fear so much more often than love, and I learned it that way also as a result of their example. How much better would it have been to have them know what they were actually doing, and making conscious choices based on the simplest of ideas that in every moment, we will either choose love or fear. This teaching is from a Course in Miracles and is taught right at the beginning of that huge work. And, then, throughout the work in hundreds of ways that most basic idea is expressed again and again, and again.
Indeed, in every moment of our lives, every thought we have, every action we take, every view that comes into our eyes–in every single moment, we have the opportunity to choose love or fear. Add to that, the teachings of Abraham by Esther Hicks, in how we can know which we are choosing–is in how it feels to us. Each feels a certain way. We might correctly imagine that love would feel good, and fear would not feel good. And, since it is impossible to pay close attention to the 60-80,000 thoughts we have each and every day, it is easy in comparison to pay attention to how we feel.
As an example, someone did something or said something or wrote something that doesn’t feel good to me. I am choosing fear thoughts. It doesn’t matter if it is right or wrong, or even if they actually did or didn’t because we can imagine it with equal clarity. But, by paying attention to how that feels, we know what we are choosing.
Gabrielle teaches a bit more: “I am willing to see things differently. I am willing to see love." The course even takes this further in lesson 21 of the workbook for students, by saying, “I am determined to see things differently."
What a different life I would have lived had this simple teaching been the foundation of my learning. In every moment I have the choice to choose love or fear. In every moment, I have the option of seeing things differently than they appear. In every moment, deep within me, I have the ultimate power to direct my thoughts by paying attention to how I am feeling, well knowing how love feels and how fear feels.
In every relationship, personal or professional, this teaching would have caused better relationships, more fulfilling, and more expansive.
Yet, I celebrate my mother for doing what she knew how to do, learning and teaching that which she chose to learn and teach. She did nothing wrong. All her choices were what she chose. In my unconditional love of her then and now, I see no fault. Instead, I celebrate her life as having been lived within her choice framework. I am what I am, partially a result of some of those choices, and those choices more often than not encouraged me to choose differently. And I have.
I wonder how it would have been had I learned these simple truths from her, but no matter–I have learned them, and now I teach them as well. It all goes around. It all has worked out perfectly. It’s all good.
Thanks, Mom! Happy Mother’s Day.
Spread Some Joy Today–by accepting your own joy. There is an unending supply within.