Six Positive Ways of Celebrating Death

For the materialistic cultures of today, death could be a scary idea. After all we would lose the physicality of all we hold as ours including our body and our belongings. Yet our ancient cultures regarded death as a spiritual transition when we discover our spirit and let go of the body. Ghosts or spirits of the departed were not always regarded as hoaxes or horror movie material, but as our venerable ancestors with whom we can communicate and share blessings with. Here are a few traditions from around the world that can help us make peace with the concept of death:

  1. Samhain: Each year the end of summer or Samhain (Gaelic word usually pronounced Sow-in or Saw-ain) around the end of October to 1 November was a celebration of a symbolic death when all vegetation retreats down into earth and the final harvest is over in the northern hemisphere of earth. Death is therefore symbolized by the scythed figure of the Grim Reaper cutting off the final crops from the fields. This festival also marked new beginnings as the pagan or farmer’s new year. A time for endings and new beginnings, it is believed that the veil between our physical and spiritual realms is thinnest at this time to allow us to communicate better with spiritual forces and departed spirits, as well as to accept blessings of the harvest.pumpkins-1004417_960_720 (2).jpg
  2. Halloween: Hallows Eve now popularized as Halloween on 31 October, followed by All Saint’s Day and All Soul’s day is a good time to remember deceased ancestors and light candles for them, consult intuition for guidance from your angels and spirit guides and send positive thoughts and prayers to departed ones. Lighting carved pumpkins and dressing up as otherworldly beings is also a tradition for protecting homes and reducing our fears. Witches are celebrated as wise ones who can communicate with otherworldly beings and spirits to bring important messages through.halloween-1009624_960_720
  3. Mexican Day of the Dead: In line with Samhain and Halloween, there is an ancient Mexican tradition for honoring dead spirits. Offerings such as incense, specially prepared food and sugar skulls are placed on the graves of the dead. Colorful caricatures and processions of death and skeletons are observed to help people be less afraid of the concept of death.day-of-the-dead-568012_960_720
  4. Kali Chaudas and Diwali: Similar to Samhain and Halloween, in India the darkest night or Amavasya night at the turn of the Hindu calendar year is celebrated as Diwali. Two days before this is Kali Chaudas or Bhoot Chaudas when crematoriums are visited for blessing the dead and goddess Kali who represents death and endings is honored. The next day is Narak Chaturdashi for cleansing and purification of negativity to prevent experience of narak or hell. Finally on Diwali night of the new moon Laxmi is worshiped to let go of the old and bless the coming new year with prosperity. Lamps are lit to drive away darkness and welcome new beginnings. dia-1035835_960_720.jpg
  5. Pitru Paksha: Several days before Diwali in September-October period in India there is a tradition of offering prayers and donating food offerings for blessing ancestors or Pitrs in the form of Shraddh rituals for an entire fortnight.mala
  6. Chinese Ghost Festival:  Similarly in China there is an ancient folk tradition of the Ghost month in August/ September. The front rows during festive performances is left empty for ancestral spirits during this month. Faux money and other offerings are burnt for the deceased to provide them energy for the afterlife. The fifteenth day of the Ghost month is called the Hungry Ghost Festival when deceased ancestors are believed to visit the living and accept food offerings. sangha_day_hsi_lai_templeIn whichever way you celebrate death, always remember there is light at the end of the tunnel and death is only a transition from one reality to another in our continuing journey of learning and spiritual growth from life to life.

No More Global Warming: Historic Climate Deal Signed

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Almost 200 countries have signed a historic deal together in Rwanda to effectively phase out the use of HFCs (hydrofluorocarbons used in refrigerators and air-conditioners). HFCs are particularly dangerous to the environment because they can trap thousands of times more heat than CO2. With this step we can now easily prevent a rise of about 0.5 degrees Celsius in global temperatures and get much closer to our target of ending global warming.

MORE HERE 

Seven Habits of Highly Spiritual People

Spirituality is all about recognising our inner spiritual truth, simplicity and oneness. Here are seven behavior traits we would commonly find in true spiritual beings:

  1. Remain Humble: Spirituality is not about wearing impressive garb and pretending to be more powerful than anyone else. True spirituality is about seeing the power in each and every person, each and every thing. It recognizes the divine essence in each stone and tree, each animal and person. Spiritual beings allow the divinity of each one to be expressed naturally because they are aware that all is divine. They keep learning.namaste
  2. Allow Kindness: Being spiritually aware, we try to understand others, their stories, their own state of awareness, their own ups and downs…and instead of judging or hating, we would feel love and only wish for their highest good, no matter how ‘bad’ they might have been. They are just reflecting  a part of your inner consciousness. You will also be kind and understanding to all creatures, including yourself in your personal journey. Be in the energy of love which is our real nature.baby-1596873_960_720.jpg
  3. Forgive Easily: Everyone makes mistakes at some point of time. Not everyone is at their peak of awareness and it is okay to have gone through those dark moments. Forgive yourself first and foremost and see others too as people just like you. In this life or past lives we all have erred and have learnt lessons along the way. We are all capable of change with a willingness to improve and heal. Allow this change by not blocking your mind with negative perceptions. Let go and be peaceful.hug-1315545_960_720
  4. Be Honest: Trying to manipulate, lie or pretend is what we do when we are afraid of allowing truth. Whom are we afraid of when there is nothing outside? Spirituality is all about inner truth. We allow our own negativity to be released by being honest with ourselves instead of hiding our faults. As we know that everything is stemming from what is within, we need not be afraid of the world either. The more we are aware of our own self-created illusions, the more courage we develop to face truth, and less the fear of being honest.best-place-1612043_960_720
  5. Feel Playfully Secure: Insecurity is the result of being unaware that we create 100% of our life, either consciously or unconsciously. It is our unconscious or unknown mind that feels vulnerable. When awakened our consciousness knows itself. Being aware of our shadows turns them to light. We meditate and feel connected to the natural perfection within that permeates all existence. In this divine play called life, everything falls in place automatically when we relax and let go of fear. kid-1241817_960_720
  6. Encourage Success: Jealousy and resentment are built out of a feeling that others do not deserve success, which stems from a fear of one’s own success. A spiritual being is free of ego, with a large and generous heart to welcome success all around including their own life. Feeling happy to see others and oneself enjoying a positive and prosperous life is the mark of an awakened being. Let abundance be.cheers-1081828_960_720
  7. Stay Positive: Negativity would have appeared numerous times to all of us. Yet there is something divinely positive within everything. All is our own awareness appearing as reality to teach us more about ourselves. As we learn, we slowly find an inner gold which can no longer get affected by negativity. In-fact negativity transforms naturally to positive energy sooner or later with awareness. Energy falls and rises again, in its various states, till it is fully awakened to its inner divine self, to our true nature.smile-1374564_960_720swatiprakash  Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and can be followed on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash

Astronomers Just Found Out The Universe is WAY Bigger Than We Thought!

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“Come quickly, I am tasting stars!” cried Dom Perignon (1638-1715), at the moment of his discovery of champagne.

Well, that maybe a rumor but more recently astronomers would have had a similar moment, when they pieced together deep space images from the Hubble telescope taken over 15 years and realized our universe is not only 20 times bigger but 90% hidden from view with a staggering 2 trillion galaxies, giving a new number to the saying, there is more than what meets the eye…

It so seems our universe has abundance to share and spare. Cheers to that!

@mediapositivity

bd

Bhaskar Dutta is a writer and IT specialist based in London.

Ten Fears Transformed Through Self Awareness

In this world everything is created out of our energy. We can choose to resonate love, peace and positive energy right now and life would be nothing but wonderful. Yet in the deep throes of our unconscious mind we might have carried fears for several lifetimes. These fears have all possibility of becoming real unless we transform them through our inner light of truth.

  1. Fear of Losing: All greed, attachment and selfishness was due to our false fear of losing something. Within us is an unlimited source of positive energy  that constantly creates all there is. There is nothing to lose because everything in the world is right now within. See the unlimited universe within you right now.universe-1
  2. Fear of Accepting: We all carry the positive energy of the creator within us. We all are deserving of endless happiness and our life is merely a dance of joy. To accept our highest good is natural when we are attuned to the inner good within us and hidden within everything.flower-213415_960_720
  3. Fear of Love: We hurt ourselves and each others due to fear. Love is the bridge that merges the I and You into one. Our limited egos are dissolved through self awareness and love is all that remains. In truth this is a wonderful experience of awakening. Our separation is illusion. Open yourself to your true nature which is love.heart-462873_960_720
  4. Fear of Being Alone: The depression and loneliness of society has roots in our ignorance of what is within us. We can be supremely self-content and happy right now. Real happiness is not a result of outer things or people. All things and people outside are reflections of the inner self. Be with the inner self and all is healed with real happiness which has no cause except itself.alone
  5. Fear of Failure: Did you know that in truth there is no thing called failure? We always manifest 100% of what we resonate. In life each moment is totally created by us. As such we always succeed in getting whatever it is that we hold in mind. The universal laws totally serve us without any conditions. Nothing stops us from achieving anything at all in this world which is our projection.mind
  6. Fear of Success: More than failure people have feared success. False conditioning was based on imagining that the world is a bad place where evil succeeds. We were jealous or resentful of success of others and also of ourselves due to this misguided perception. Real success is all about being positive which creates all good things. Simply see yourself and everyone as deserving of amazing success by forgiving the past and allowing the positive now in full abundance.pumpkins-1004417_960_720 (1).jpg
  7. Fear of Trust: Unhappiness comes with an expectation of something from others. Trust heals this by helping us realize that everything naturally follows our own karma. Whatever we send returns our way through the illusion of others. The law of nature is absolute and it sets us free through perfect trust. All is well if we are well from within. Automatically positive situations and people surround us when we are positive. Trust yourself.awareness-1052371_960_720.jpg
  8. Fear of Responsibility: We have underestimated our own power at times. The fear of incapability is false. When we awaken to our inner truth we activate this amazing power or Shakti within us that creates not just our life but all life, not just our limited universe but all multidimensional universes. Doing anything is easy if you let go of fear and let your inner god or goddess take over.force.jpg
  9. Fear of Control: Conspiracy theorists would have you believe that the world is controlled by certain beings while we are all victims of evil. In truth all controls of the world are placed by our inner self who is wise and all powerful. We create the world. All the rules of our universe are there to help us arrange our world beautifully. In truth there is no chaos but a natural rhythm within each particle. All is perfect in itself.leaves-1708525_960_720
  10. Fear of Letting Go: Ego or ignorance kept us trapped in our limited experiences from time to time. We felt blocked in our own cage of limited beliefs chosen by us out of fear. We have the choice right now to shed all our limitations and accept our inner unlimited self which is everywhere, in all things and in all beings. This can happen, not by a desire to escape, but very naturally through self awareness. Meditation automatically raises our inner power towards liberation.meditation-1384758_960_720swatiprakash  Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and can be followed on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash

Five Steps to Exit the Matrix

We all live in the Matrix. It is a virtual ‘reality’ experience we all are having – an experience called life. All our thoughts, both conscious and subconscious are fed into this system that creates a new ‘reality’ for us from moment to moment, frame by frame and lifetime to lifetime. Its exactly like a multidimensional computer simulation that we experience with all our senses. The Matrix unconditionally serves our every fantasy and fear. All our negative or positive ideas create our lifetimes or alternate realities. While creating a better experience is possible, rising above the Matrix is possible too. For those who care for the truth, these are the five steps through which you can get unplugged:

  1. See the Signs: There are signs everywhere that tell you that you are plugged in to the Matrix. You may have experiences of synchronicity – each of your thought is inevitably connected to the entire world through the Matrix. Your dreams are connected to reality and transcend time, giving you glimpses of past or future. See the world as fractals – they are everywhere, in clouds, in shorelines, in the soil, in mountains, in the seashells and pine-cones, in vegetables and flowers, even in your own body. There is nothing where you cannot see nature’s design or sacred geometry indicating the mathematical factorials encoding all creation. Most of all notice how everything is energy and how your thoughts are materializing into your life everyday by themselves as per the inbuilt rules of this ‘program’. Pay attention.fractal-gold.jpg
  2. Meditate: You will need to learn how to get unplugged yourself instead of waiting for someone else. Meditation requires nobody and nothing except you. Breathe naturally, closing your eyes helps initially, find the space between your thoughts and stay there in the silence of ‘no-mind’ for as long as you can. Do this daily for half an hour at least and increase the time. You will get better at being free of thoughts and your mind. See the blank space of your inner self and be with your inner self which is not your mind or your thoughts. Let go of the outer layers of physical senses, emotions, mental ideas and desires. Experience just being. It is possible and necessary.buddha-1.jpg
  3. Master Reality: The more you spend time with your inner self of no-mind, the more control you will have over your mind and hence over the matrix of reality. You will start playing with reality as it twirls around you folding into the shape you choose. Your life situations and experiences will be at your command. You are only practicing and sharpening your skills. Be detached from the desire of any outcome. Both mental and physical actions are karma and they return. Be pure and positive because harming anyone, even yourself will only get you entangled in further karmic cages making it very hard to be free. Be unconditional in what you create; even if you create something positive expect nothing in return to keep yourself free of karmic webs. fractal-a
  4. Rise Above the Illusion: All the people, events, things around you will be revealed as your own mental projections, conscious and subconscious. You can enjoy this experience of ‘reality’ through money, fame, romance and fun…yet no matter how much you acquire, these will be mere illusion and nothing more. The reason why enlightened masters have no fascination for increasing their bank-balance, sensual pleasures or popularity is simply this. The truth is only found within and it far more joyous than anything outer can ever be. No amount of money in the matrix can buy you freedom. Talking negatively and being unhappy or depressed is worse as it drops your kundalini shakti or inner power down. Keep rising above the illusion while being supremely happy and self-content for no external reason whatsoever.fractal-1475802_960_720
  5. Allow Truth: You do not have to be anxious to be freed of the maya of life. Wishing to be free of desires is also a desire. Thinking of being free from the Matrix is also a thought that plugs you in further. To be unplugged just let go and that is all. Simply be in meditation. Allow this moksha to happen by itself whenever it has to. Have no expectations of how, when and what it will be like. Surrender to your truth. You will be established in a state of self-awareness and meditation even in your day to day life after practice of meditation. It may feel safe to stay in the comfort of the matrix, yet be fearless because truth sets you free and a cage even if golden and beautiful will still be a cage. Be with your inner self and allow your liberation to simply happen whenever you are ready – any moment…even right now. universe-1044107_960_720swatiprakash  Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and can be followed on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash

Earth Notes #2 by Rani Iyer: The Chorus

 

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Preparing for monsoon is an intense period in the forest. On the one hand the forest is parched for moisture, on the other, the intense rain will test the recovery of everyone. Every tree is swaying to the strong winds. After I calm my fears about the swaying trees and strange noises, I recognize a chorus. It is unique. Giant trees scattered across the mountains undoubtedly talk to each other…. maybe shout to each other.

The giant, hollow, bamboo strands rubbed against each other producing deep, hollow sounds, much like a tall person speaking to a midget like me. The tone is kind. The sound is gentle. There is rhythm and variation in the talk. They continue to talk to me through the dreadful drum of rolling thunder. I want to cross the rocky creek before the lightning splices through the dark cloud hanging at the mouth of the creek. I fear that rocks will split. I fear I will drown. The bamboo murmurs to me.

I hop over the rocks and scale the steep banks. I enter the forest and hit the path. I freeze. Was that the trumpet of an elephant? I sniff. I still. I hide behind a tree. One can never be sure in the wind. The large tree sways strongly. It emits a strange guttural noise. I feels the earth move under me. In panic, I hug the yellow fissure strained bark. I can’t get my arms around the tree. I sway with the tree. I scream. The tree emits another guttural growl.

I realize that I might not walk out of here to tell this experience. This could be my last conscious moment. As if in a trance, consumed by the movement and sounds, I sit at the foot of the tree. ‘Yes, you can!’ I tell the tree, punching the bark with my fist. ‘If I can, so can you! Everyone can! Don’t you dare to fall!’ The tree groans. I cover my ears and press my back to the bark and sit there, on a giant swaying root ball.

Much later I hear. The trumpet-like noise was coming from across the valley. It is another tree. ‘H…old on!’ I tell that tree. I can’t even see it. But I know that the tree knows. Nobody on my mountain will fall. Everyone will stand. It has to be.

‘Stand tall!’ I shout to the wind. I shout till I am hoarse. I shout until the wind dies. The rain falls gently. The water trickles and the soil soaks. Eventually, it forms a runoff.

‘We made it! We made it!’ I pat the bark. It has been hours since I came to the forest. There is no wind. The tree groans….not so guttural. The tenor is gentle. I hear the other tree trumpet. Others follow…..a cheerful chorus. I wait until it dies down. I feel honored by the giants.

rani iyer2Rani Iyer is the author of over ten non-fiction books and over seventy magazine articles. She writes about science, nature, culture, human-nature interactions, and natural ecosystems. Rani Iyer has visited and worked in many temperate and tropical forest systems in Asia and North America. Her favorite place on Earth is to be among the old growth mixed temperate evergreen rain-forests at the Olympic Peninsula. Her experiences as a tropical field biologist, scientist, instructor, laboratory assistant, and as an administrator inspire her to write. You can read more on http://www.raniyer.com/ and on her AMAZON page 

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