The Power of Advance Gratitude
"Advance Gratitude" is pretty much the key to everything! That's the whole story in a nutshell. But of course you want more...
For a State of Grace (Enlightenment)
I've told this story many times over the years, but it seems I never posted it anywhere. I want to post it now, to make it easier to share with others.
In my Jung SuWon martial arts practice, I used to meditate every day. Some days would be just spectacular. I'd be floating. Knowing "just how to do it", I would do the exact same thing the next day. And... Nothing. Nothing whatever. It was like I hadn't done anything at all.
The story repeated itself half a dozen times or more. I'd have a peak experience in my meditation, followed by weeks of slogging through my practice, with seemingly nothing to show for it. Every time I thought I had it, it turned out that I didn't have anything at all!
At my wits end, I finally decided that the peak enlightenment experiences were not the result of anything I did, really. Rather, they were a gift. A gift of grace, as it were.
That state of grace was the enlightenment experience I sought after. So, when it came, I was immensely grateful for it.
Eventually, it occurred to me that in addition to being grateful for events I had already experienced, I could be grateful for forthcoming experiences, as well.
(As I have written elsewhere, gratitude is a powerful enlightenment practice—quite possible the most powerful practice of all. So being grateful more often can only be a good thing!)
And what do you know? That Advance Gratitude for the Gift of Grace turned out to be the key to experiencing enlightened states with much greater regularity! (Of course, I could also stop myself in a dozen emotional ways. But as the issues were cleared away, the frequency of peak experiences increased!)
For Realizing Your Dreams, As Well
So here I am, having found the wonderful Unity organization. If you define yourself as "spiritual, not religious", it just may be your cup of tea. It's a worldwide organization with communities all over the place. They aren't wedded to any one set of spiritual practices. They welcome anyone, no matter what spiritual path you are on, no matter where you are on that path! (They were founded in 1880, no less! Where have I been this whole time?)
Intrigued by this organization (intrigued enough to have joined the choir!) I am reading on of their foundation volumes, The Five Principles: A Guide to Practical Spirituality. Lo and behold! Can you guess what I read?
Go ahead. Guess. I'll wait.
Ahhhh... I can't wait! I've got to share. Get this!
- God is Energy. (pg. 23) Like fish in living in water, oblivious to the medium they dwell in, we are living in an energy field (p. 64)
- Manifesting is not so much about about thinking positive, as it is about feeling positive: "In recent decades, we've learned that feeling has more to do with creating our experience than thought." (p. 64)
- "The universe does not use words. It operates a field of energy, and so do we." (p. 64)
- "Pray from the energy of a co-creator, tapping into our own divinity to create outcomes." (p. 89, emphsis added)
- "Saying 'thank you' for a gift that has been received is merely good manners. Saying 'thank you' in advance is faith." (p. 97-98)
Bottom line: Advance Gratitude is the key to Manifesting Your Dreams, as well! (Who knew??? :__)