Let calm breath enter you and breathe away what is conjured by the mind. Let a new tune enter you and sing a new song. Let new words of compassionate wisdom enter the place where old negative thoughts have dominated. Harmonize with your own rhythm, with the breath going in and going out in its own natural way. Stay tuned to the beat of your own heart and the spirit in you that seeks to find its own voice after so many years of silence. Listen to that voice more carefully and more often, the one that is your own true voice. Let it nurture you and sustain you at last, bringing you into calm reverie for all of your days.
There is a diamond glittering deep inside yourself and you don’t even know it, the diamond of your Self. And when you feel its light you might find it bright, but when you close the door you think it isn’t there, but it still shines as bright when there is no light at all. Your diamond Self is like the moon when it’s full and the moon when it goes dark, always glowing in all its glory, even when you can’t see it. The many light and dark facets of this diamond Self are what you seek all of your days and all of your nights, this special light inside yourself—your Self!
It’s two in the morning, just barely awake, emerging from and remembering a dream lived, a world visited just a moment ago. Eyes closed, I notice some fears; fears of the stillness, fears of the dark, a confrontation with aloneness in a primordial forest of lurking, unseen dangers.
Consciousness gains some momentum, then thoughts: Will I be able to get back to sleep? Will I be able to function tomorrow? What sins did I commit that landed me here?
Thoughts originate from many sides of the many-sided self. Consciousness must decide what road to take, which thought to engage or not. If the decision is to return to sleep, a stand must be taken.
Rigid stands, like commands, tend to mobilize greater waking awareness, the antithesis of sleep. Nonetheless, a decision requires a course of action if it is to be successfully implemented.
Ancient wisdom and practice suggest repetitive prayer, mantra, or intent to find the way back to the sleeping ship. Something within is quite suggestible, like yin awaiting directions from its yang. The gentleness and thoughtlessness of soothing repetition woos yin into submission, as yang surrenders its directive to the successive round of verse.
Yin, as the body self, awaits this direction or easily falls prey to impregnating thoughts, alien yang scenarios that stir the energy in the body to a greater waking consciousness. Thus, the ego must take its stand, albeit gently, by bringing attention back to its chosen lullaby.
Perhaps a suggestion might direct awareness to the sensate body, telling it to “Go deeper into calm.” With each successive repetition of this suggestion the body releases its grip and finally goes back into sleep, word and action uniting as one.
Perhaps the intent is to shift awareness to the energy body in dreaming, suggesting, over and over again: “I shift my awareness to my energy body.”
Perhaps the intent is to connect with a being no longer in this world, their name becoming the repeated word, their image the focal point.
Perhaps the intent is simply to sleep and awaken at a designated time. Again, state the intent, gently, over and over again, returning always to the word should attention find itself elsewhere.
If a thought or feeling keeps interfering, write it down and promise that insistent part of the self that attention will return to it with full waking awareness in the light of the following day. Make sure to keep that promise the next day. With this, the many-sided self can join in cooperative sleep assured that it will be held in deep contemplation during waking time.
Perhaps taking a stand to not go where thoughts want to go, where spirit wants to go, where dreaming wants to go is most appropriate, taking a stand to not be drawn into something you are not ready for, perhaps intending instead to go there under your own power and under your own terms, in full conscious awareness, when the time is right.
Taking a stand is not a demand, it’s leadership in the service of deeper rejuvenation and inner harmony, the real intentions of sleep.
Don’t get so caught up in your own mess that you can’t see what’s really there, what’s come to help you, or what you’ve been missing. What you are searching for may be right there, looking you in the eye, asking you to look back and get what it’s been telling you. When you get caught in your own mess you become blind, deaf, and dumb, virtually shut down, and then life, going on all around you, has a hard time communicating. Time to pause and look around at all you’ve been missing. You might be surprised!
Don’t attempt to overpower nature. Let nature take its natural course. Remember that even in the midst of a storm there are moments of calm; the eye of the hurricane, the time between wind blasts, the pause between lightning strikes. There is always an opportunity to reestablish stability and gain balance. Maintain your flexibility as you learn to ride the rough times that naturally occur, for you are no more than a storm yourself, capable of test and turmoil, a powerful force of nature. You are your own boat and you are the rocky seas, you are the wind and you are the waves, you are the sun bringing the end of the storm and the calm air too that signals that it’s over. Be grateful for all that life brings and all that you are, the calm eye and the wild storm too, powerful energy indeed! Use it wisely.