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MMW - October 21, 2017 - Your Gift From 2017 Hello to each of you. We are here, now. We will begin. Today we are asked to speak on the gifts that may have come from 2017 for each of you. A gift is something willingly and unconditionally given. A gift does not "cost" you anything. In this context, they are born of your patterns of experience over time. Gifts are repackaging of energy in a way that means something to you, is useful to you, improves you in some way. Your capacity to receive Gifts "from the universe," from within, from relationships, etc. is heavily dependent upon your capacity for choice because you have the final say in how most experiences affect you. Seeking to find or create the Gift in an event, relationship, yourself, a time frame, or the world is not an avoidance of reality or a rejection of an experience. It is a practice is extracting what matters to you. The most traumatic of events can reveal Gifts from within them. Gifts speak to your capacity to emphasize the difference between what happens TO YOU vs what you DO WITH WHAT HAPPENS TO YOU. Not all experiences, relationships, or days will have a Gift. If someone walked up to you and smacked you in the face for no reason, it would be difficult to find or create a Gift from that, though it is not impossible. We clarify this because we do not mean to imply that your should look into your most painful experiences and find or create a gift from them. That is not a valid approach. Sometimes the Gifts come AFTER trauma and pain. Not FROM the trauma or pain. If you suffer a terminal illness, this is not a Gift, but there may be Gifts sprouting from all around you in response to the illness. If someone were to slap you in the face for no reason, you may not be able to find the Gift in that slap, but you may find the Gift in the kindness of the witnesses who rushed to your aid. Accepting the Gifts that arise from trauma is not a way to avoid the pain or diminish it, but to uphold your wholeness. You are never ONLY happy or ONLY sad. Never. No matter how extreme one may lean toward one or the other. You cannot sustain one over the other. There will always be, at least, brief shifts and changes. Accepting the Gifts of your life simply means that however far or long you may lean toward pain, suffering, poverty, illness, sadness, etc. you are willing to be whole by making room for a spectrum, not just an extreme. Many of our students passively allow Gifts into their lives, and accept about 10% of these. Many of our students reject the opportunity for actively seeking Gifts because of cultural imprinting that says that you cannot be happy if others are not happy, or says that you cannot be happy unless it is on predefined terms, or you cannot be happy without earning it, etc. In looking at a period of time like a YEAR, one look back at that year and see what comes to mind as the most striking of patterns and influences that shaped the life, and then explore what Gift arose from that to help define the year. A year can be defined by a blissful experience or pattern, as well as a challenging and painful pattern. Our first question to each of you is this: WAS 2017 DEFINED FOR YOU BY CHALLENGES, OR DEFINED BY JOY? Claire: Both. Cong: For me it's both too Uma: Joy mostly, some challenges Bobby: A few challenges but I'd say mostly joy Maureen: Challenges Maureen: sprinkled with joy DianeHB: Both challenges and joy for me NEXT: Do you feel have already accepted or know the Gifts that may have come from the dominant pattern of this year? Claire: Somewhat. Uma: They seem quite obvious to me, which makes me think there are some I am missing Claire: I may have missed some. Cong: Yes, I think I'm quite clear about the gift I received from many joyful and challenging situations DianeHB: I think I have Bobby: This last year was quite a relief, so, I'm pretty sure I do NEXT: Do you feel these were passively received? Have you found yourself in a position to actively seek the Gift? Cong: I think I'm quite actively seeking those Claire: I actively sought the Gifts in my various experiences. Doesn't necessarily mean I "got" all of them. Uma: I don't know if 'passively' describes welcomed with open arms, but that's how I have been receiving them. Not this year, but in the past I have actively sought them Bobby: Once things settled down, I think I was more actively seeking DianeHB: I don't think I've been actively seeking the gift, but I've been seeking to understand my experiences, so maybe I have Maureen: For me the gift (I think) is understanding or comprehension which (for me) is a combination of passive and active. In fact it's been useful for me to see where it's been best to become more "passive". Bobby: For me, I think, it's key to not demand the "gift" right away but allow the processes to unfold and eventually a "gift" can be seen in a scenario We are asking these questions of you to help prompt a look at how you navigate Gifts. These are valid insights and questions. Gifts cannot be demanded or expected. They are accepted. They can be created or found, but it is the acceptance that is key. Claire: I think of insights as Gifts. Maureen: One of the biggest Gifts of all. Maureen: Michael, what do you mean, in this case, by active vs passive? I think I know what you mean but I'm seeing slight variations of this in our responses. When we say that one passively accepts the Gifts, we mean that they are obvious and rather difficult to avoid. When we say that one actively accepts the Gifts, we mean that they are not as obvious, and sometimes rather difficult to accept. It often takes an Active approach to the Gifts that may come from a broken relationship, for instance. The broken relationship was part of your pivot toward self-care that self-acceptance that may never have happened if in a relationship of distraction. Gifts that require an active acceptance tend to feel like a painful trade. Losing one thing to open to another, or getting ill to reach a state of awakening never considered before. Your observation of INSIGHT as a Gift is also valid. There are 9 Gifts: INSIGHT WISDOM ENLIGHTENMENT HEALING ACCEPTANCE TRUST GUIDANCE SYNCHRONICITY SURRENDER Truth = INSIGHT/WISDOM/ENLIGHTENMENT Love = HEALING/ACCEPTANCE/TRUST Energy = GUIDANCE/SYNCHRONICITY/SURRENDER Every experience, relationship, day, year, has packed within them these 9 Gifts that may or may not rise out of them. Maureen: When you put it that way I can see how joy can be sprinkled throughout challenges. The Gifts are always "right under our noses". Insight is a short-term gift of Truth. Wisdom is a lifetime Gift of Truth. Enlightenment is an evolutionary permanence in the infrastructure of Essence. Healing is a short-term Gift of Love. Acceptance is a lifetime Gift of Love. Trust is an inherent resource of Essence. Guidance is a short-term Gift of Beauty. Synchronicity is a life-changing Gift of Beauty. Surrender is a manifestation and embodiment of Essence as a Gift of Beauty. If you look closely, personal awareness tends to bring Gifts of Truth, awareness of others tends to bring Gifts of Love, and paying attention to life tends to bring Gifts of Beauty. This is by no means a complete list of Gifts that one could extract from experience, but it is a shorthand, so to speak, toward helping you to receive the Gifts that may arise, because all Gifts will likely fall under one of these 9. If you were to describe 2017 in terms of the greatest gift you received, which of these terms would you say is your Gift from 2017? Bobby: Definitely Acceptance Claire: Some Wisdom and Trust. Claire: and Healing Cong: Wisdom taking an edge over healing, with a hint of synchronicity Maureen: Acceptance and Surrender. Uma: Surrender DianeHB: Most recently Acceptance, but I also see insight/wisdom from earlier in the year Bobby: I recognize others of course but listed the greatest for the period mentioned Uma: although I have to say 2017 has been packed with Gifts of all of the 9 If you are ever confused about what Gift arises from your experiences, keep in mind that a GIFT is often "what you do with what happens to you." These Gifts are unlimited. They are all around you. They are in everything. Everyone. Every Day. Every year. They can be passively received as a part of your natural growth, or they can be actively embraced as a way to expand and increase in your capacity for BEING THE GIFT THAT YOU ARE. YOU are all of these Gifts, though you tend to bring to the lives of others 1 to 3 of these across your relationship. Including to yourself. It can be quite loving to look at yourself in a way that embraces the Gift that you are to yourself, and to learn of the Gifts you bring to others. This set of Gifts can help you to invite Gifts for a day, for your year, for your relationship. It is important that your intentions are set as invitations, not as expectations or demands. For example, you may recognize that you could really use some Insight. Invite it. Ask around. Look for it. Be open to it. You may not be able to demand that it appear, but it is there. It will arise as a Gift. Keep in mind what works best for short-term, which works well for larger arcs of time in the life, which ones are tapping into greater cosmic themes. Bobby: Is there a particular way that we bring Gifts to Essence or is it pretty much all of the above? Bobby, if we understand the question, Essence is 100% aware of and receiving of everything you are as a gift. The Gifts of which we speak are for the Personality as a path of awakening, wholeness, choice, empowerment. Essence invited you as a Gift. You are created, but every Gift arises from you. We can take a few questions, if there are any. While we await questions, we can say that each year brings a Gift that arises collectively. 2017 is a Year of Enlightenment, with an emphasis on the Gifts of Truth. The range of rejection and receipt of these Gifts may be fairly apparent. Yes, CONG Cong: can Michael comment on the primary theme of gift from 2017 for each of us in attendance today? If you have assessed your Gift, we will comment. We will not assign you the Gift, but we can comment. Uma: I would love to hear your comment, Michael One moment. BOBBY - The Gift of Acceptance has shifted you away from uncertain footing in who you are in relation to others. You are finding your way to be vulnerable and authentic while enduring the differences between yourself and others. The Gift of Acceptance is allowing you to stop defining yourself or others by that difference, but allow them to be separate when they have to be separate, and encourage a bridge if a bridge is possible. CLAIREC - we would look toward the Gift of Trust. This has been life-changing in its exploration as you reduce your overthinking and overfeeling and simply return to the natural state of Trust in yourself and in others. Your anticipation and expectation are finding a way to be allowed without overwhelming your capacity to trust. CONGN - Wisdom is the Gift of 2017 as experiences have brought to light some clear upgrades to your enthusiasm and pursuits and range of possibilities. MAUREEN - Surrender has come to be the Gift of 2017 as experiences have put you in a position where there is rarely any means of control beyond your navigating AS Essence. UMA - Surrender is your Gift of 2017 for the same reasons we describe for Maureen. DIANEHB - Wisdom is your Gift of 2017. Knowledge is gained from experience, but the application of knowledge is Wisdom. You have worked hard to apply your knowledge, and Wisdom is arising as a Gift from this so that your life can change. We will close here for today. When we say to you that each of you is a Gift to us, we are not being romantic or flattering. It is simply true. Embrace your Gifts. Be your Gifts. Good day to each of you. Goodbye, for now.