Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Heaven or Hell: A Daily Choice

By Rev. Amari Magdalena

At some point in my life I began to surrender the story of the untoward happenings of my childhood.  I woke up to the fact that my parents probably did not roll out the bed each day, throw their legs over the side and stand up proclaiming, “How can we screw this kid up today!”  Quite the revelation and one that leads me to today’s topic.

Perhaps some of this did come out of my inculcation in childhood.  My mother always said we create heaven and hell on this earth; it isn’t some other place.  Though a lot of the early years felt more like hell, at times, than heaven, in the recesses of my mind I subconsciously absorbed that belief.

As the shamanic path became much more relevant than the formal religions I was exposed to, and I recognized the rising and falling natural rhythms, I was in a better position to accept this wisdom. I now recognize that each day, each hour, each moment, I have a choice.  I can either choose to live in the lighter mind of heaven or fall to the depths of heavy thoughts in hell.  It is MY choice.

I just got off the phone now from “push button hell.”  (Some years ago, I did an amusing skit for a University of Phoenix on this scenario.)  My anger was evidenced as it was taking me more time than I’d planned to take care of something.  Wanting a person, I finally hung up, redialed and this time waited for the prompt, “Or push 9 for another reason.”  9, got me to a human.  I had to laugh at not the failure of the push button system, rather my impatience that caused my ire.  I’m sure I’m not alone in allowing that little venture into Hell with today’s automated everything.

So very many people, in a complicated and complex world, that I know are living in Hell.  There are lots of reasons and I surely don’t offer my choice of heaven or hell when they are in the depths.  However, I do know from my personal experience of score and fifty years on the planet, that I choose my state of mind.  Further, I direct my consciousness to being more aware.

Much of the time, no matter what challenge is being presented, I recognize the choice of mind focus. As a result, I’m in an even and hopeful mood most of the time.  My anger when aroused, and other hellacious emotions, is short-lived and often laughable on the other side of its expression.

What I teach, and practice, is holding up the palms of your hands each day.  In one resides Hell; in the other Heaven.  Looking at the palms of your hands and weighing your choices, ask yourself, “Do I choose Heaven or Hell?”  When it gets down to this simplicity, I believe it is easier to see the choice and choose for a more peaceful, hopeful state of mind. 

The world will continue to unfold as it will.  There will be times of peace and times of great division. In duality, that is a reality.  The mystics, avatars and masters who walked the earth and recognized that they were on the earth, not of the earth, figured that out.  This is a temporary experiment in separation.  Once we wake up, choosing our state of mind, and enjoying the ride, becomes much easier.

So today, ask yourself: “Heaven or Hell?”  The former will bring peace and perhaps laughter; the latter confusion and depression.  The Dalai Lama with his great sense of humor personifies heaven. That’s the example to follow. I sincerely hope that today you have abundant slices of heaven!

May light in the east awaken your creativity; release in the west clear the darkness, wisdom in the north guide and renew you; childlike hope in the south restore your spirit; connection with higher mind above shine on you; deep reverence for earth below give you sustenance; and may the spirit within ignite the flame of love in all parts of your life.

[17th Blog in this series.  53 past blogs are found in “Shaman Talk,” ebook and softcover on Amazon.]

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