Curses Begone!

Boj (no relationship to Job, I assure you) had it rough. Just ask him, and he would eagerly relate the apparent woes of his life. He was cursed, he was certain. Habitually he thought about, and spoke about, all that was wrong. To him, every day seemed a chore, a battle to be endured from dawn to dusk. He didn’t just believe in Murphy’s Law; he had been the inspiration for its first draft. Boj was infamous for his uncontrollable tirades. It never dawned on Boj that if he changed positively within, that the so-called world without could improve, as a reflection of that change.

When circumstances went wrong, as they often did for Boj, his usual way of reacting was a version of the following performance: With his face reddening with building pressure, Boj would bend down into a deep squat (as though gathering energy from Mother Earth), and then spring upward onto his tippy-toes. At the apex of the spike, with his head convulsing from side to side like a ravenous lion, he would roar:

Dam# iT# al&L tH#E waY to $he%Ll and #ba$%%^k! Swee#T Ffly#%ing #fU@g%-a- doodle!

This lifE i$ one #h3!! of a RuFf bu##ggnng ride!

It was on one of these not-so-sweet occasions, that his neighbour, better known as Granny Goodadvice, approached him and softly said, “Having a rough one, Boj?”

“What was your first clue?” asked Boj, with a scowl.

“Oh, I don’t know,” said Granny, with a subtle grin. “A little birdie tol’ me so.”

“So, what of it?” asked Boj.

“Well, I just wanted to share some advice, in case it could be some service to you.” Granny, who was ninety-nine according to neighbours, waggled her index finger at BoJ, with a come-here-sonny look.”

When Boj had moved closer, she leaned close and whispered: “At one time, I was also no stranger to cursing. I knew all of the curse bombs, and I dropped them haphazardly everywhere I went. I could unload great big A-bombs, and strafe the atmosphere with rat-a-tat tat machine-gun ones. But one day, a dear brave soul approached me and tol’ me that my life would improve if I started expressing sincere gratitude…from my heart.”

“That’s it!?” exclaimed Boj. “That’s your great pearl of wisdom?!”

“Uh, huh,” said Granny, with a nod. “Yup, that’s it.”

“And just what,” said Boj, with a scowl, “do you think that I have for which to be grateful?”

Granny squinted like the Clint Eastwood fan she was and said, “Your life, sonny. Your very life.” And with that, she turned and ambled back to her home. It was time to watch her afternoon soap opera.

Dare to Dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

The Chain of Gratitude

Recently one morning, I had finished eating my breakfast of poached eggs, when a thought entered my mind about gratitude. I was actually brushing my teeth when it occurred. I found myself thinking, “thank you for my breakfast.” Just as quickly, another thought related to gratitude entered my awareness; leading to the following chain:

  • Thank you for the eggs.
  • Thank you for the bread, butter, and plate.
  • Thank you for the frying pan and stove.
  • Thank you for my kitchen.
  • Thank you for my refrigerator.
  • Thank you for my apartment, electricity, and running water…

As you can readily tell, the list of related items and conditions for which I gave thanks are like links of a chain. I soon actually chuckled to myself, because I realized the chain is endless. I’m glad that a willing and eager desire to offer thanks is within me. Such is part and parcel of realizing a good life.

I am not advocating a Pollyanna approach to life–far from it. People who deliberately give thanks still encounter challenging situations. My point about offering sincere gratitude is related to the science of neurophysiology. Hebb’s Rule, or Cell Assembly Theory, basically states the following: neurons that fire together, wire together. By practicing gratitude, we’re actually training our mind to deliver a positive outlook, which equates to less suffering.

As this relates to the law of attraction, it’s important to know the following: Whatever we practice becomes performed more easily. It, thus, becomes our habit. This also includes suffering and pity parties, in which we have trained our mind to label situations negatively. We can avoid worsening challenging times by ingraining a perspective in which we deliberately seek out the good that surrounds us. It is here. Napoleon Hill, who wrote Think and Grow Rich, was well aware of this. I offer one of his famous quotes:

Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.”

Gratitude, habitually and sincerely expressed, has the power to transform our lives. Circumstances and events that might have been considered commonplace (such as a breakfast of poached eggs) become miraculous. You might ask yourself the following: “What have I trained my mind to focus upon–that which I’ve labelled good, or that which I’ve labelled bad?” If you’re seeking to improve the quality of your life, I highly recommend introducing, or continuing, the practice of gratitude. Breakfast anyone?

Dare to Dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Gratitude 2.0

The wisest of the wise know the importance and value of gratitude. They often relate its power to transform the quality of our life. Through sincere gratitude (which is thought, felt, and spoken), we raise our life and the lives of those around us. Platitudes and trite clichés are not permitted; for they are barren soil, incapable of growing the quality of life we desire to experience. Nothing less than heartfelt sincerity will suffice.

With regard to the subject of appreciation, many persons may be unaware that it is divided into two major classifications. Gratitude 1.0 is when we give thanks that we can do be, do, and have in our life. We are grateful that we can see, hear, smell, taste, and touch. Likewise, we are grateful that we can walk, talk, and perform. We appreciate that we have a family, home, job/career, and food to place upon our table. We give thanks that we can lead a good life.

Gratitude 2.0 is of a more profound nature, one more closely related to the facts of deep appreciation. What, you might ask, is the difference? In Gratitude 2.0, we realize that we, as the body-mind (person) can do nothing. It is, and always has been, God (aka Consciousness) all the way. Although it appears that humans are the doers, we are not. We have been carried, and continue to be, for the duration of our apparent lives. In Gratitude 2.0, we realize the truth of Acts 17:28:

For in Him we live and move and have our being.”

If we contemplate this even briefly, we may arrive at a deeper realization, one in which Gratitude 2.0 may literally take us to our knees in the most humbling appreciation. Do ‘i” really know how to heal a cut—or does the healing of a cut occur? Do “i” maintain my breathing while my body-mind sleeps—or does respiration occur? Likewise, do “i” digest my food, coordinate muscles, and maintain cellular functions? No, “i” do not, at least in if I consider myself only the body-mind.

In Gratitude 2.0., we acknowledge that humans do not perform the miracles associated with daily living. We may give thanks, however, that God does. And when we arrive at the ultimate understanding, we realize that the following quote from the great Persian mystic, Rumi, expresses truth: “I searched for God and found only myself. I searched for myself and found only God.” Yes, it’s true, the Father and I are One. Of this, we give sincere thanks.

Dare to Dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

God At My Table

How fortunate I am to have been raised by loving parents. Although not perfect (for who in human form is?), my parents set many fine examples of how to be in this world. They encouraged–more importantly practiced–honesty, caring, generosity, and industriousness. One of their powerful examples was that of saying grace before eating our meals. As a child, with head bowed and eyes closed, I most likely believed that they were uttering words to a non-existent God that was floating somewhere off in the clouds. I’m thankful that I now know better.

From the human perspective that is often conditioned by the “materialist” paradigm of reality and innocently ignorant of our deeper nature, saying grace to a God that we cannot see may seem ludicrous. To many persons it does. When we glimpse life on a deeper level, however, we may be at least tempted to say “thank you” for the bounty before us. When we become still, we realize that something profound is occurring below the surface-level appearance of things. Let’s use that slice of bread in our hand, as an example:

Humankind may say, “But ‘i’ make that bread; it is ‘i’ that do the work.” On the surface level of reality, that certainly appears so. It also appears to be humans who till the soil, plant the seeds, harvest the crops, own the bakeries, load the ovens, and ship the baked product to various stores owned by humans. But can even one of those humans actually grow wheat? Do we orchestrate that miracle–or any of the other countless miracles that occurs in the eternal NOW? To understand this more deeply, we can turn to a passage of scripture that holds great meaning. It is from Acts 17:28:

“For in him we live, and move, and have our being;

as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.”

I now know that whether I realized it or not, God was always at my table (wherever “i” was), in all ways. God was, and IS, the very table itself. God is the bread, the butter, and all of the bounty–however simple in appearance–upon our table. God was my mother, my father, my sisters, and “i,” who were so fortunate to have food to eat. God was also the knowing of one another; for without God (Consciousness) how could any degree of abundance been known? Grace? Yes, I still say it, although apparently living on my own. My grateful heart has so much for which to give thanks–the Greatest of which is God. God is always welcome and acknowledged at my table. After all, it is His, and so am I.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🤍

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

The Good We Seek

To live is to experience a wide range of circumstances. No one is excluded or given a “Free Pass.” There will be ups and downs; triumph and tribulation; exaltation and despair. In any given moment, on any given day, we may feel as though what we seek is beyond our reach, or worse–an illusion. The world can seem against us; our life filled with struggle. The achievement of our desires may seem an impossible dream. If such seems the case, it may help to know that the good we seek is closer than we think. It is, in fact, our very nature. To experience more of it, it’s important to know the following: When we change the way we think, we literally change our world.

How may we find the goodness we desire? Through a shift in consciousness directed by True Self, which is That beyond name and form. Of all of our wonderful abilities, one of our greatest is our power of attention. Contrary to popular misconception, we don’t have to let our mind gallop like a wild horse. With practice, we may figuratively grab the reins and ease the mind to the left, to the right, or slow it down to a trot. By taking a few slow breaths, we can calm our mind and redirect our attention; which, thereby, shifts our experience. To deliberately shift us to a favourable point of attraction (which, according to the Law of Attraction must attract more goodness), please join me on a journey of gratitude. The following are a few suggestions about how to feel better…NOW:

  •  Put on a T-shirt, fresh from the dryer. Feel the warm embrace of the fabric against your skin.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Phone a relative or long-time friend and let the sound of his or her voice elevate your spirit. Think of how truly rich you are for having such a person in your life.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Listen to a selection of music that never fails to raise your spirits. Let the rhythm and sounds transport you to a realm of reverie.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Take your parents out for a tea or coffee. If such cannot be the case, invite an alternate caregiver or teacher who gave of his/her time, energy, or heart and asked for nothing in return.

There is the goodness of life.

  • While walking down the street, guide your attention to a mother or father with a young child. Perhaps the child is holding the parent’s hand, or being pushed in a stroller. For just a few moments, let your mind sense the world through the child’s innocent perspective.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Look at your hands–truly look. Spread your fingers wide and feel the stretch of your palms pulling taut. If there are scars or digits missing, be grateful for the fingers you still have and what they enable you to do. Pick up a pen–as though for the first time–and feel the wonder of every cell, nerve, and fiber.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Place your attention upon nature, even if you are living in a large city. Sit upon a park bench–if only for a few minutes–and let your eyes find the birds, butterflies, squirrels, and insects that are having their day. Feel their aliveness, and imagine the journey that they, too, are having.

There is the goodness of life.

  • While eating your next meal–however humble or extravagant it may be–place your attention upon the food before you. With soup, salad, or sandwich, be with each mouthful. Be mindful of the taste and texture of the food. Be grateful for the innate wisdom of your body, and how it performs the function of digestion without a word of instruction.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Go for a walk, even if only in the halls of your apartment. Marvel at the wonder of your feet and legs and hips that allow you to do so. Feel the aliveness that is stirring within them. If this cannot may be the case, use walker, cane, or wheelchair to move; the distance matters not. Be present, mindful, alive.

There is the goodness of life.

  • Perform at least one good deed daily for someone else–be that person a friend, relative, or complete stranger. From the depths of your heart, ask nothing in return, not even acknowledgement of your kind deed. Know that giving–sincerely–is your reward. Tell no one; in doing so you’ll begin to disengage from the conceptualized self (ego), which is the root of all suffering.

There is the goodness of life.

Through the deliberate practice of seeking goodness, we reap yet another–even greater–benefit: We attune ourselves to our deeper nature, which is God within. It is here that we will find the Source of all Goodness, for that is God’s nature. It is also ours. When we realise this, we may go through life with strength, courage, confidence, and poise. Such goodness of life is that close.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🤍

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Dr. Phuphuey’s Happiness Prescription

“Dr. Phuphuey will see you now,” said Nurse Whatsthebigfuss, clutching a clipboard across her chest. As it was Clothes-Free Friday, she was naked except for a tasteful leopard-print mask. “Please follow me.”

With a roll of his eyes, Mr. Notfeelingsogreat got up from the waiting room chair and followed her to an examination room that adjoined Dr. Phuphuey’s private office. “He’ll be with you in a few minutes. Please remove all of your clothes, including your underwear, and place them in this bag.”

“But I’m here for psychiatric reasons!” exclaimed Mr. Notfeelingsogreat.

With a stern look, Nurse Whatsthebigfuss wagged a finger toward a neon sign in the corner of the room that was flashing GeT NaKeD. “Sorry, she said, “but rules are rules.”

When the door closed, Mr. Notfeelingsogreat reluctantly stripped off his clothes and stuffed them into the bag. He sat down, clutching the clothing bag over his lap, and thought “Rules, damn rules” as he nervously surveyed the room.

A few minutes later, Dr. Phuphuey made his grand naked entrance. A stethoscope was dangling from his neck. He sat behind his desk and briefly scanned Mr. Notfeelingsogreat’s chart. “So,” he said, “what can we do for you today?”

“I haven’t been feeling so great,” began Mr. Notfeelingsogreat.

“Tell me more,” said Dr. Phuphuey. He leaned back in his chair, flopped his legs onto the desk, and fanned his arms behind his head.

“Well,” said Mr. Notfeelingsogreat, “my infancy would probably be a good place for me to begin. I was told that my mother refused to breastfeed me. How can I know for sure? I mean, I don’t have any proof, but on a certain level I, myself, have felt this rejection–I know I have. In grade school, I was once ridiculed by my school chums, about a little spelling mistake, of all things! It seems that I thought egocentric ended with ck–you can understand my blunder, I’m sure. As a young boy, my life went downhill after that. I soon made a fool of myself by making a math error. I made ones in geography, history, and science soon after. Yes, I admit it–I’m not perfect! I suppose I should get to the point, about my problem with me now. For quite some time, I’ve realized that I’ve been feeling sluggish and lethargic. I’ve lost all the zip in my doo dah. I’ve haven’t been sleeping well, either, even when I put myself to bed early. Also, I’ve been feeling confused; I’ve been feeling useless; I’ve been feeling depressed. I’ve been feeling lonely; I’ve been feeling stressed; I’ve been frustrated. I’ve also been overeating; but when I do, I blame myself. Then I get on my exercise bike, but when I begin to pedal, I begin to wonder if I’m pedaling correctly–I mean I’m not a pedal pro. I wonder whether I’m pedaling too fast or whether I’m pedaling to slow. Often, I stop pedaling after only a few minutes; but sometimes I jump right back on my bike, and I pedal some more. I feel a great deal of uncertainty in my life. Should I do this? Should I do that? Maybe I should do this, that, and the other thing! I make a plan for my day, but then I ask myself if that’s what I really want to do. So–wisely, I think you would agree with meI stop, I pause, and I reflect about my own inability to decide what I want to do. Sometimes the situation becomes so difficult, that I make myself a cup of tea and I think, and I think, and I think some more; but then I, myself, wonder if I’m over thinking. Can you help me?

A long snore, a brief snort, and the faint call of “Mommy,” caught Mr. Notfeelingsogreat’s attention. Dr. Phuphuey had fallen asleep behind his desk and was clutching his teddy bear. His head was lolled against the office wall, as though in a hangman’s noose. Before he fell asleep, Dr. Phuphuey had scribbled a prescription that was lying on his desk; it contained various suggestions that could help alleviate Mr. Notfeelingsogreat’s chronic I-itis, which in layman’s terms means inflammation of the I. You, dear reader, can help by selecting one, several, or all of his helpful pointers. Here they are:

  • Reduce the use of personal pronouns such as I, me, and my.
  • Life is not just about you–it’s about all of us!
  • Begin every day with sincere gratitude for being alive. Continue all day long.
  • Think give, not get. Improve the quality of someone else’s day. Repeat until it becomes a habit.
  • Meditate.
  • When your ego van is rocking, your false self is knocking. Don’t go near!
  • Step out of your mind every day. “Be” in nature–allow a squirrel or a flower to remind you how to live.
  • Stop listening to the fictional story of your fictional “you.”
  • Unplug from the matrix by shutting off your T.V. It’s called programming for a reason.
  • Discover your real Self. You’re not who you think you are.

Suddenly, there was a quiet knock on the door. Nurse Whatsthebigfuss peeked into the room and quietly informed Mr. Notfeelingsogreat that his appointment was over and that another patient was waiting. Clutching his bag of clothes and prescription, he timidly made his way past the waiting room and out to his car. He’s still waiting to hear what you would prescribe.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Substance Abuse

Most of us are well aware, either personally or professionally, of the unfortunate type of substance abuse that is so prevalent in our current world. This article has nothing to do with that issue, but the title is still appropriate. The Substance to which the title refers is Consciousness. It (aka God) is the foundation of our Being. Without Substance we literally could not be. The abuse of Consciousness occurs every time we use God’s name in vain, or benefit from God’s goodness without expressing our gratitude. Substance is our very breath; every inhalation and exhalation is a gift. I’m aware that this may be a seemingly impossible case to build in a short article; but I’m up to the challenge. So, let’s begin….

The cropped photo attached to this article is from a book by Neville Goddard. He was a modern-day mystic (born in the Barbados) who lectured widely throughout the United States in the early to middle twentieth century. Some of his other books include The Power of Awareness, Faith is Your Fortune, and Feeling Is The Secret. That “Consciousness is the Only Reality” will be easier to comprehend if we answer the following questions: “Have you ever had an experience in the absence of Consciousness? Could such be possible? Could you ever know a sensation, image, feeling, thought, or object without Consciousness? No, of course we couldn’t. Here, we at least acknowledge that consciousness is integral to our life.

To someone unfamiliar with the Law of Attraction, the claims that “what we think about, we bring about” may seem patently absurd. We’ve been conditioned to believe that we are separate selves and the physical doers of actions. We’ve also assumed (due to long-standing ignorance) that events happen by chance. All that it takes to debunk this myth is to take a look at nature. How often does spring follow winter? Occasionally…or always? What type of plant might we expect to manifest if we planted a corn seed? A sunflower…or a corn plant? What of the tides? Do they only ebb...or do they also flow? As has been expressed many times, we live in an orderly Cosmos (not chaos) that functions by spiritual law.

The comedian Steve Harvey made a statement that adds credence to this article. From what I know of Mr. Harvey, he endured some very challenging years before becoming a successful comedian and television host. During an audience warm-up prior to the taping of one of his television shows, he made the following (paraphrased) statement: “You don’t get yourself up in the morning; God gets you up!” Most persons would proclaim, “Baloney, I get myself up! What if, however, our assumption that there is a little “i” in the head is erroneous? What if we realized, contrary to common belief, that we do not have volition as persons? To awaken to our true Self is to awaken to power.

That which is termed “reality” by the majority of persons is actually the waking state. Although similar to the dream state, it is more clearly defined and has a continual plot. Beings who’ve deeply investigated their essential nature are aware that they are not the doers of our actions. This is echoed in books such as Ramakrishna on Non-Doership by Gautam Sachdeva. Mind is the power that moves our bodies, despite the persistent illusion that we move ourselves. Such is directly states in John 14:10, through the following words attributed to Jesus:

Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me?

The words that I speak unto you I speak not of Myself; but the Father that dwelleth in Me, He doeth the works.

John 14:10

Does that help to build the case that we are not the doers? Consciousness (God) is the Doer. Let’s add a little more evidence through another verse; this time from Acts 17:28:

For in him we live, and move, and have our being.”

Acts 17:28

When we realize that Consciousness is the only reality, the quality of life we experience can change dramatically. Such is dependent on our level of understanding and degree of faith. If we dream our desire with feeling, God can make it apparently real. That’s the deal. That’s also the reason that the Bible contains verses that relate this understanding, such as the following from Matthew 17:20: “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

You’re not the doers, folks; neither am I. This article appears in Consciousness because Spirit (what I truly Am) desired to share an inspirational article that had the potential to elevate your life. I know that it definitely feels as though we’re the doers; but that’s the very nature of dreams–to feel real. You know, like the ones in which you wake up in a sweat? For us to be the doers, there would have to be a “someone” within the body-mind, and such is not the case. Science has deemed the search for that little rascal (the ego) as “the hard problem of consciousness.” Science will never find it because it’s a fictional character. God (Consciousness) is the only Knower. Our true Self is Spirit, dreaming a human life. This is the truth that lies beneath Henry Ford’s famous quote: “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” Mr. Ford realized that through God all things are truly possible.

An effective way to attract the good that we seek, is to stop the Substance abuse by giving thanks to God each and every day…even for the supposedly little things. Gratitude is the polar opposite to ingratitude; and according to spiritual law, it must attract circumstances that are in harmony with it. Just ask Mr. Harvey. Note: For those who are curious to learn more about the mysterious nature of this “reality,” press here for a link to a twenty-minute presentation about quantum physics.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Heartbound

Today, a man on LinkedIn posted a short video presentation of a happening that occurred within his family. I watched his presentation intently. I’ll be honest, it moved me to tears. Literally, I wept. Why? Because what he shared resonated with the Truth of my Being. That “Being” is in me–pervading; and It is also in everyone else–pervading. It is the substance of That from which all of us are made. In a world of illusion, It is That which is Real. It is raw, undiluted LOVE in all its fullness. Here is the account:

***

My daughter did something wonderful this morning,” the man began. He then related that he had watched as his elder daughter placed some newspapers in the mailbox. He was puzzled, so he asked her why. She told him that her younger sister so enjoyed going to the mailbox and finding some mail. That’s why she did it–to be a source of joy for her little sister. The man then wondered to himself when the last time was that he had performed such a deed, purely for the sake of bringing joy to someone else. The man further shared that when his younger daughter checked the mailbox, she was ecstatic!

***

As I’m writing this, the joy of that short account is still ripe within me. No happiness of the ego can approach its transcendent authenticity. The account reminds me of what my dear mother, who experienced her fair share of suffering, often wisely told me. She told me that the easiest way to shake off the blues was to do something nice for someone else. There–in the heart of this timeless moment–is the secret to a very rich life; a life devoid of the self-centered “what’s-in-this-for-me?” perspective of the little “i.” If you can catch that thief in operation, you are on your way to liberation from its rule.

The false self, the character of Mister or Misses “me,” is not the real Self. As far as natures go, those two are galaxies of distance apart. True Self is giving. It is the Source of love, comfort, joy, and peace. We feel our way to It; and we recognize and appreciate It just as It is. The false self is the psychological me; the fictional self who outwardly may appear giving; but who inwardly is subtly or overtly interested in self-preservation, appearance, and taking. It is the author of The Book of Sly.

Today–right now–we can take back our birthright and be heartbound. We’ll recognize the nature of True Self by the way we feel. No thinking is required; in fact, thinking is the hindrance that keeps us from recognizing our essential nature, which is Truth. When we rediscover the Center of our Being, we are once again home in our sense of belonging. True Self is closer than our breath–not a heartbeat away. One of the best ways to rediscover It is to live from the perspective of that elder daughter. What can we give? A friendly smile or kind word? Some financial support? Time spent sharing a talent? A telephone call to someone who is lonely? A shoulder to lean upon? And what of that “beggar” on the street–the one who shares the same True Self? Isn’t it time that we truly live by giving of the heart?

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2020 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

The Hammer Named “Choice”

Once upon a time in a land very close, indeed, there lived an evil hammer named Choice. Everyone knew that The Hammer was big and monstrous and bad to the bone. How it loved to prey upon unsuspecting thumbs! All day long, it would hide in the bushes and await the opportunity to pounce. “Heh, heh, heh, ” the thumbs imagined Choice muttering as they walked by, “now, there’s a delicious-looking thumb to whack!”

The thumbs never knew when Choice would strike. On some days, a lot of thumbs were whacked hard; on other days, only a few thumbs were struck; and on rare days, most of the thumbs went merrily about their business. However, almost all of the thumbs lived with the pervading fear that at any moment The Hammer could fall. In secret, the thumbs held Town Hall Meetings with the window blinds drawn and the lights turned low. They would talk in whispers and discuss what could be done to improve the condition of their lives. During such meetings, a variation of the following was almost always heard: “Did you hear about Burt?” asked one thumb to another. A terror-stricken hush would fall upon the room, then: “Yup, got whacked today–real hard.”

One day, however, a startling revelation occurred to a bright little thumb. “Wait a second,” thought the thumb, “I cannot, in fact, know if I will be whacked by the big bad hammer today; but I can definitely choose how I live. I get to choose–how I think and feel about every circumstance that arises. Choice doesn’t have meI have Choice!” Empowered by the epiphany, the bright little thumb felt jubilation arise from within. It inhaled a deep breath and squared back its shoulders; and from that day forward, it focused on the beauty to be enjoyed here and now.

Within a few days, other thumbs noticed the dramatic change in the brave little thumb. It seemed to be shining with hope, positivity, and a fearless spirit. Often the brave little thumb would be seen marching around town wearing a T-Shirt emblazoned with “I Am Lion Thumb, Hear Me Roar.” In time, word of the change began to spread to other thumbs, who told two thumbs, and so on, and so on, and so on. The startling transformation spread far and wide. The thumbs all rejoiced, and there was dancing and singing as never before. They even held a Thumb Fest open to all; with everyone chanting “We have power, here; we have choice, now!”

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So, what’s the point of this little parable? Did all of the thumbs march off into the sunset and live happily ever after? Well, yes and no. Like us, of course, the thumbs continued to be whacked by life; but the good news is that due to this, we and the thumbs evolve and grow stronger. So much of life is beyond our control, but we can definitely control our attitude toward it. We can cower, or we can express our courageous nature. The choice is ours. One of the greatest lessons we can learn is this: To live in fear is not to live.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2020 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers