Tuesday

New Year, New You?

New Year – new you. Usually that means a diet…

For any diet to be successful, we have to give less attention to food and more to our fat-causing thoughts.

By the Law of Attraction, you can’t get slender and beautiful by considering yourself fat and ugly. Tough but true.

If you hate and despise yourself in a world that has a low opinion of people who are overweight then you will create fat – and the food that creates fat will leap to your attention and clamour to be devoured - we know it does that, right?
If the world respected fat people and despised thin ones (as used to be the case in some countries where fat indicated wealth) then the odds are, you would be thin. It’s what you think and believe about yourself that is the key; not the food itself. If you need a cause to hate yourself, your weight is an easy target in a world full of yummy, addictive, sugary or salty foods.

And, of course, the more we worry about nutrition, the more cause for worry we attract too..

Michael Pollan’s excellent book In Defence of Food, (Penguin) suggests that the American people’s major problems with weight gain began as the same time that low-fat foods were introduced. It may be a coincidence, but it is certainly true that much of what we eat today is not actually food but an arrangement of nutrients and what Michael calls “food science” – highly processed and rearranged so that our bodies don’t understand it.

That, and how we are eating these food substitutes – on the street, in the car, in front of the TV, in the movie theatre, while we read a book (and more and more alone rather than with others) – affects the body’s reaction. Without the original make-up of food, including the fats, we don’t have the original automatic signalling system through our body that we have eaten enough. Instead we crave more. And without sitting down and taking time over food, we fail to notice when we are full.

I’ve never been skinny and I’m not built to be a rake. However it took me many years to be at peace with that. I have been what is considered “too fat” and I’ve done diets that worked very well. But they worked more because of my belief in them and my satisfaction at the idea of getting slimmer than because of the food I was eating or not eating. That’s why diets will work to start with and become more difficult later if the issues of self-esteem that caused the need for them in the first place are not dealt with. What really works for me is to ask my body every day what it wants to do and to eat. At the moment it’s mostly blueberries, oranges and watercress and bouncing on my rebounder trampoline. My addictions on the other hand want more Christmas cake, chocolate and biscuits. You can tell the difference between the two – the real desires are much more quietly expressed!

My naturopath wants me only ever to eat 70%+ chocolate and in nutritional terms of course she is right. But that kind of chocolate doesn’t attract me or make me happy. So by the Law of Attraction, it can’t help me much. What can help is loving myself - again and again and again going back to that wonderful ho’oponopono of “I love you, I’m sorry, please forgive me, thank you.”

It’s vital when you want to become more slender to do it from the point of view of positivity and not from a feeling of self-hatred. From the ego’s and the body’s point of view, dieting is starvation and both will react to attempt to regain the weight and possibly add some more in order to ensure that you do not starve to death in the future.

So a slow diet is always a more successful one in the long run (I know, I know!). Also it’s unwise to refer to "losing weight" as the ego has no concept of loss being a good thing. In absolutely everything else in our life, we want to find things that have been lost so why would weight be any different?

Instead, refer to “becoming slender” or “becoming fitter” and seek interest in how you eat. If it’s hard to find time to cook for yourself or to sit down and eat consciously then the problem is not within your body; it’s in the part of you that doesn’t feel worthy of time for yourself and your body.

Our desire to be beautiful, young and slender has profited the medical industry greatly through the development of surgical procedures and drugs that will have the desired outer effect. But the key to happiness is not beauty, nor youth; it is self-appreciation. Sure, have the Botox if you want; even the surgery if you want. If you do it from a point of view of moving towards your bliss, that’s fine. But if you do it because you don’t, ultimately, love yourself, you will have just the same problems afterwards.

A wonderful affirmation to help with weight issues is “Blessed am I among women/men to live and love in this beautiful temple.” That way you are offering love to your body, and that is the best start you can have towards a perfect and healthy physical life.

So go enjoy that diet! You’ll find me bouncing on my rebounder and we can compare notes in February.

Wednesday

Reclaiming the Miracle of Christmas

“What the festival of lights really stands for today is a reaffirmation of hope, a renewed commitment to friendship and goodwill, and a religiously sanctioned celebration of the simple - and some not so simple - joys of life.” The Times of India.

The trouble with Christmas is that it’s a bit like the phrase: “When you’re up to your neck in alligators, it's easy to forget that the initial objective was to drain the swamp.”
This time of the year people start complaining about the expense and commerciality of Christmas. This year, with the belief that there is something 'wrong' going on in the world's finances, you may be dreading the expense of Christmas. But to name something is to give it power, and what have we done? We've given the financial situation a cute, alliterative name - the credit crunch. So we have made it real.
Don't doubt for a minute the power of humanity to make thing real - a truth is only a belief held by a certain number of people and passed on to others who, in turn, believe it. By believing it, we make it real.
Yes it may seem tough to change your mind in the face of such widespread external belief but it is possible. It is our choice.
Right now we have to decide whether to give 'the situation' more energy through moaning and complaining and believing what is said on the News or we can choose to look for prosperity, health and joy in the coming of Winter. By looking for the hope andthe glory we can change the world from within.
It's not them who controls our lives, whatever we may have thought, it's us.
So perhaps the real secret of Christmas this year is to use the ide of a credit crunch for good. To simplify something that has got out of hand...this is the perfect time to say 'No!' to anything you don't truly want to do at Christmas. Commit instead to something that would have meaning instead of a season of angst and worry.
Only we can reclaim the miracles and mystery that have existed at this time of the year for thousands of years - way longer than Christianity has been in place.
I’ve often wondered whether, without women, Christmas might be a much happier (albeit slimmer and drabber) affair. It is horribly likely that, without the duty and fervour of women, the majority of blokes would probably be happy to pick up whatever’s remotely turkey-like that’s still in the local supermarket freezer on Christmas Eve, some ale and a bag of party poppers.
Maybe they’re right...We seem to run ourselves ragged with all the preparations to the extent that we overspend, over extend ourselves, over-complicate things and try to live up to some incredibly unrealistic standard of hospitality and catering...not to mention the horrors of some members of the family visiting —or events that we long outgrew but are still expected to attend—and make our children attend ‘because it’s traditional.’
And then, when it’s all over, there’s still the oven to clean and the washing up to do... (took me until August to clean the oven this year...)
Don’t get me wrong, I ‘do’ the whole Christmas thing – but there isn’t a single part of the ritual that I don’t love. But it took me years to learn to re-engage with the magic that does make it such a special time of year – whatever your faith.
'But I can't have a simple Christmas because of the children,' you may say.
Perhaps the worst misuse of Christmas is the idea that ‘it’s for the children.’ In a way that’s true but only in the way that we too need to be children again in order to see the miracles and magic of Christmas in us. That saying of Jesus’s about having to become a child again to enter the Kingdom of Heaven is the answer. The ‘child’ is the part of us that expects miracles and magic (probably why Harry Potter is so popular). It’s also the ego – and for most of us, it’s been overwhelmed with ‘duty’ and ‘shoulds’ and other horrors for so long that it simply dreads the word ‘Christmas.’
It is the ego of the child that demands the same presents as everyone else. It's the ego of we adults that thinks that we have to give those presents in order to be 'good' parents. But what about giving an experience of spirit instead?
So what is this Christmas miracle all about? It’s about the rebirth of the real you; the peeling off of the outer layers that hide the gold within; the sloughing off of all the past year that you’d like to leave behind and a commitment towards creating a better, happier life.
You don’t have to be a Christian to see the wonderful, deep inner meaning of the Winter Solstice. Nowadays, we tend to focus more on the New Year as a new start to life (and use that for a guilt trip too!) but, in fact, it’s on December 25th that we have the first, visible evidence that the sun is returning and that spring will come once again.
From the day we first started appreciating the cycles of nature, humanity has celebrated the Solstices. The Winter Solstice heralds the coming of the Light; the return of the Sun—or the birth of the Son—and I believe that there is a deep primal need in our animal soul to celebrate it whether our busy, social, disbelieving selves deem it relevant or not!
The Winter Solstice is a kind of choice between life or death. We may know that the sun returns because it happens every year. But the ancient celebrations are just as much about our willing our own inner source of light to rekindle at this time as they are about the external sun.
The dark days of winter are when the roots go down and consolidate for new growth. One of my sacred rituals this time of year is planting prepared hyacinths which must be kept in the dark and cool for at least a month so that they can develop roots. Then, after Christmas, they will grow and give beautiful colour and scent to herald the often long-awaited new life of spring.
Nearly all the major religions have special symbolism around this time. It’s often said that the birth of Jesus was placed on December 25th because it was the ancient celebration of Saturnalia and that Christianity ‘stole’ a great deal of the pagan symbolism. Two main theories compete about this - one claims that in A.D. 274, the Roman Emperor Aurelian inaugurated December 25th as the pagan "Birth of the Unconquered Sun" celebration, at the calendar point when daylight began to lengthen. Supposedly, Christians then borrowed the date and devised Christmas to compete with paganism. But William Tighe, a church history specialist at Pennsylvania's Muhlenberg College, puts forward the exact opposite theory —that Aurelian created a pagan alternative to a date that was already of some significance to Roman Christians. Tighe says that the pagans-first theory only originated three centuries ago in the writings of Protestant historian Paul Ernst Jablonski and Catholic monk Jean Hardouin. Tighe acknowledged that the first hard evidence of Christmas occurring on Dec. 25 isn't found until A.D. 336 and the date only became a fixed festival in Constantinople in 379.
Whichever it was, there have long been a series of religious festivals going into—and out of—the darkest days and it’s a wonderful reclamation of Christmas to do something personal and spiritual to mark the ending of one year and the resurgence of the light in you for the coming year. Who knows, it might make the rest of the celebrations fun? And, even if you still think Christmas is going to be hell, perhaps one of this year’s resolutions could be to promise yourself that next Christmas you will actually do what you would like to do...

Christmas/Solstice rituals:

Plan a little time on your own – or with friends if they want to join you. Find something that represents the ‘old you’ of 2008 whether it’s something you’ve grown out of or something that represents a difficult time that you have gone through and then create a little ceremony of release (including burning the symbol if that is possible). Dress up in something you love to wear, light a couple of candles, and take a few deep, connected breaths. As you let go of the object, say something like ‘I release this representation of pain to the Light and move forward to my Higher Good.’
Then take a moment to ask your Higher Self, Guardian Angel or the Source of All to watch over you, protect and guide you to a happier life in the next year.

Fill an atomiser with water containing a few drops of refreshing aromatherapy oils such as lemon or grapefruit plus some Flower Remedies – such as Rescue Remedy, Walnut (protection from outside energies/help with change), Willow (dissolves resentment), Wild Oat (for uncertainty about your path in life) or Holly (anger and hatred) and spray around the whole of your home saying ‘In the name of the Source this room/house and all that is in it, is blessed, cleansed and filled with light.’

Make a prosperity wheel or dream board. This is a montage of all the things, experiences and happy times that you would like to draw to you. Instructions on my Pure Prosperity website. This works by reprogramming the subconscious to look for what you want instead of what you don’t want.

Write a letter to a friend the other side of the world (or to someone closer if neccessary - but someone with whom you only correspond infrequently - someone without email probably!). Date this letter 1st December 2009 and in it tell them of all the wonderful things that have happened to you throughout 2009. And invent everything you could possibly want from a perfect home, partner or job to living in the Maldives. Don't worry about seeming grasping or greedy - that fear is probably what has held you back for so long. There is a reason why Luis Vuitton bags are made and houses and cars are built –so that people can enjoy them. And if you are wealthy, you can do SO much more for others. To think that you can't be rich because of the starving poor is an argument full of holes. If you are wealthy you can donate; teach and offer time to ensure that they too learn how to be prosperous like you.
And if you're now saying 'but my friend would hate me if I sent him/her a letter like that' then I’d suggest that you find a friend who wouldn't. And that's probably the best task you could set yourself this year - to be with people who allow you to be prosperous. If there's no one, then plan to send it to me, because I'll be SO happy for you! You can post it in the comments below if you like.
The letter will work best if it's full of enthusiasm and acknowledgement of the good in your life. It's great if you can start off with something that you actually know IS going to happen. That gives you confidence.
Will it happen? Well, it's got a better chance of happening if you do write the letter than if you don't. If you put it away somewhere safe and forget all about it, the chances are pretty high that at least 60% of it will either be with you or on its way by the date you put on it. My letter last year came 80% true...no complaints about that!
Wishing you the perfect Christmas time...

Tuesday

Making Peace With What Is

This is one of the main thrusts of the Abraham-Hicks teachings. Sometimes we can’t change the outer circumstances as quickly as we would like – and sometimes we’ve made choices that we regret which land us in less than perfect situations.

But as what we think, what we feel and what we receive are always a perfect match then it’s really important to make peace with the now that we have created up to this moment.

To do that, all we really have to do is acknowledge that we created the situation. And by making peace with it in that way, we can at least ensure that we won’t create it again.

Making peace does not mean going into denial as in 'it's fine...I'm fine...' when you're not - and it's not about gritting your teeth and enduring because it's 'good' or 'worthy' to do so - it's about seeking for the better thought in a difficult situation and building blocks to happier thoughts in order to reclaim your power.

One of my favourite phrases at a challenging time is Catherine Ponder’s ‘I can hardly wait to see the good that comes from this!’ Once you can say that, then you’re on your way to something better.

We’ve been back from Montana for nearly a month now but that amazing holiday is still warm in my heart. And there was a lovely example of making peace with the now within it.

Our friends, Ris and Joe run an impressive Leadership Coaching company. They use horses to help people realise how they relate to others at work and play and during our visit they wanted to give both Peter (now re-named with his Native American Indian name of Lion!) and me a session with the horses in the Round.

What you do is to wander among their seven very different horses and pick one that you want to work with through your intuition. You’ll always pick the right one. Then you and that horse go into the Round (a circular corral) and either Ris or Joe teaches you how that horse and you are just the same and how to gain each other’s trust.

I was really keen to do this as I’ve always loved horses and ridden since I was nine. Lion wasn’t so keen because he’s a bit wary of big animals but he was up for giving it a go.

The first bit of making peace with now was when Ris and Joe simply had too much work to do to be able to take time out to work with the horses and us during our stay. For a day or so I allowed that to unsettle me a bit – you know the kind of thing; hanging around in case instead of just going out and doing something else that I wanted to do and trusting that all would be well.

But once I’d come to terms that it might not happen at all and if it didn’t, that was okay, and I’d had a lot of fun walking in the horses’ huge field with them and grooming several of them, then I was absolutely at peace with it.

Then, of course, Ris found the time...

It was early evening and I’d just led a workshop at the local Unity Church so I wanted a little time to gather my thoughts so Lion went first. I just wandered among the horses a little at the same time as him and was quite sure that, when my time came, I wanted to work with Billy, a young red-roan appaloosa mustang who was broken to the saddle but very shy.

Lion went into the Round and time passed as he and Walker, his horse, began to get to know each other. It was Montana in late October and evening and it started getting seriously cold.

Time went on and it became very clear to me that the sun was about to set and time would run out for me to have my turn. And we were leaving the next day. So, frozen to the bone, I started working on making peace with that.

Oh God it was cold! But I didn’t want to go inside because I was fascinated by what Lion and Walker and Ris were doing. And I was so pleased to see Lion working with a horse. And of course, I love horses and can hang around them whenever I want to – I used to have my own horse a while back and I did some learnt-from-a-book horse whispering with her (to very limited effect I must admit!). And I was just so thrilled to see Lion losing his fear of horses and realising that both he and Walker were getting into an incredible accord.

So I made peace with the situation and watched Lion and Walker and the amazing, totally glorious orange and crimson sunset across the mountains of the sacred Bozeman valley and I realised how utterly, utterly lucky I am.

But I was still awfully cold! So I sent up a swift prayer to be able to endure out there until Lion had finished – and within 30 seconds there was a warm breath on my cheek. Billy the mustang had walked quietly up behind me. He put his head over my shoulder and placed his chest against my back warming me through. It was glorious.

I knew from Ris that Billy never approached a human voluntarily so this was amazing – and when she saw what was happening she was as thrilled as I was.

Once Lion and Walker had finished, I patted Billy’s neck and walked forward to congratulate my husband. And Billy followed me. He did what’s known in horse whispering circles as ‘join-up.’ It’s the biggest mark of trust a horse can offer. And he did it for me! And all I had done was stand, watching my husband and making peace with the situation.

It was one of the best moments of my life – I kid you not. I was so thrilled. And so chuffed when Ris telephoned her husband, Joe, to tell him all about Billy and me – because Billy had never, ever done that before in the Round, let alone out of it.

So this month, whenever there’s a tricky situation, or even a slightly uncomfortable one - hardly likely over Christmas I know (!), and see if you can make peace with it. Just let go of the resentment with a more cheerful thought about how you are the one responsible for your life and that you created the situation that you are in. Just knowing that, and owning it means that you are already creating a better future. Then see what Christmas miracles may come for you.

Wishing you a wonderful Solstice/Christmas season – a blessed and sacred time.

Let Go and Let God - a story of Montana folks.

Mike Dooley refers to the human desire to know exactly how things can possibly work out as the ‘cursed hows.’ He’s right. So often we think of a desired outcome and then scupper our ability to attract it by trying to work out how on Earth it could possibly happen.

We fuss about possible outcomes, what other people have to do to make it happen (and often don’t trust them to do their part and even try to take control ourselves) and we so often come to the conclusion that it is impossible.

Nine years ago, I did the impossible by legally bringing the first ever dog back from the USA to the UK without quarantine. It was about the time that Passports for Pets was setting up in the UK – but only for animals from Europe; America was excluded. This is how it came about...

For the Love of Dog.

‘Don’t make me choose,” I said miserably.

'You shouldn’t even be thinking of choosing!' he answered.

But at that horrible moment I knew that a psychological life-or-death decision was necessary. Life meaning my authentic self, death being the life another person wanted me to choose – no matter how well-meaning he might be.

He wanted me to take my 10-year-old beagle, Didcot to the Humane Society to be re-homed, then come home to England and forget our ‘failed venture’ of emigrating to Montana. Bringing the dog home was not an option.

The only available answer was the one so often quoted in spiritual circles – 'Let Go and Let God.'

But how?

To cut a very long story short, we had emigrated to Bozeman, Montana from London, England to run a cafe. But my husband’s US business visa had failed after less than a year and he was back in England. I had my own visa and could stay in the USA while he tried to sort it out with the American Embassy in London. The phone call that day was to tell me that their answer was ‘No.’ As a couple, we had no alternative but to try and sell the business and go back to England. If I chose to stay, the marriage was over.

In those days, the Passports for Pets scheme which enables a pet to change continents without six months in quarantine was not available from the USA to England; the scheme was due to set up in Europe only in one year’s time. So, Didi could not go from the USA to England without six months quarantine in a cage. She was too old to cope with that even if I could.

I bought Didcot, Didi for short, two months after my first husband died. She was a sassy, loyal and incredibly cute beagle – and she was an immutable part of the package when I got married the second time. And I knew, that if I left her, and the marriage – which had been badly scarred by the Montana experiment - failed anyway, then I would lose on all counts. Much as I loved my husband – and much as his intentions were honourable – this was an impasse. I was not leaving Didcot behind.

Since coming to Montana, we had both attended Unity Church in Bozeman every Sunday and loved its energy and the vibrancy of the minister, Philip Zemke. In the UK we’d heard of Unity – and read a lot of Catherine Ponder’s work – and this particular church was truly inspirational. I knew too about Silent Unity and, after putting the phone down on that horrible call from England, I went to see Philip

He listened to my tearful ranting and then said: 'Honey, don't tell the Lord what you don't want. Tell Him what you do want.'

'I want to get Didi back to England without quarantine,' I said. 'I want to sell this cafe in less than three months. I want someone to help me run it in the meantime because it was my husband’s cafe and I have no experience.'

'Well let’s pray!' he said and we did.

But it was at the end of the prayer when I started the worrying and fussing again that Philip said the words that I will remember forever – and I always pass on to anyone who might be in a similar situation.

'Honey,' he said. 'Get outta the Lord’s way! You’re standing right in his way and he can’t get around you if you block his path. All you gotta do is ask for what you want; then you just gotta let go and have some fun. Go riding quarter horses in the sunset and watch the eagles. Just get outta his way and your prayer will be answered.'

On this particular occasion, as everything I wanted was verging on the impossible and I was so terrified that I hardly knew how to breathe, I didn’t really have much of a choice. It was trust or give up.

So two days later, on Sunday morning at Unity in Bozeman, I stood up and said:

'I need a buyer for the cafe; I need a cafe manager to help me run a business that I don’t understand with the Taste of Bozeman Festival in two weeks’ time. My dog can’t go to England but she could go to Europe, so I need to find a dog-lover who lives in Europe who would look after her there while I go back home and work something out. I need somewhere to stay here in Bozeman as I have to move out of my house in a week. I need help to work out US to Europe immigration for a dog. And I need someone to lend me a quarter horse so I can go riding in the sunset and watch eagles.'

A hand went up at once and Charles Carrell, the Unity Musical Director, who had catering experience and didn’t need to earn money at that time, volunteered to act as unpaid manager for the cafe. And beautiful Robin, the actress, offered to introduce me to her friend Charlie who need help exercising his three quarter horses.

What a start! Emboldened, I started talking to people on the backstreets of Bozeman when I walked Didi in the mornings. 'Cute dog,' they’d say.

'Do you know anywhere we could rent?' I’d answer. 'Do you know any dog-lovers in Europe?'

Within two days, two people had offered us accommodation, and someone’s cousin had telephoned me from Spain to say she would care for Didi, She said something very important too: ‘Now you know someone can help, you can relax. I don’t suppose for a moment your dog will need to come to us but the fact that you know she can means that something better can turn up.’

She too was saying ‘Let go and let God.’

And each evening, Charlie and I rode his quarter horses in the sunset, watching the eagles.

But the cafe didn’t sell.

I telephoned the Ministry of Agriculture in England and asked whether taking a dog to Europe from the USA and then registering it as a European dog meant that Didi could be eligible for Passports for Pets when it started up.

‘We’d never thought of that!’ said the woman at the other end. ‘I’ll check.’

She called back, quite excited. ‘We’ve had a lot of Americans upset that the scheme doesn’t work for them,’ she said. ‘But your idea of taking your dog to Europe and staying there for seven months while the process goes through is fine. I’m telling other Americans that already so thank you.’

My goodness – we were even helping others!

That very night, an old friend of my husband’s emailed out of the blue, revealing that he actually owned a little house in Andalucia, Spain. I phoned him asking if I could possibly rent it. He was outraged. ‘Rent?’ he said. ‘Rent? Mi casa es su casa! I will not charge you rent! You stay in my house for as long as you need. And your husband too if he wants to. Rent indeed!’

I booked a flight from Seattle to Malaga for two months’ time.

But the cafe didn’t sell.

There was another problem: Charles the unpaid cafe manager was doing brilliantly but he was away at a convention for the weekend of the famous Taste of Bozeman and neither I nor the cafe staff had the slightest idea what to do. We couldn’t pull out – I desperately needed the revenue to make the wages and the cafe’s rent. We could sort out food but knew nothing about Heath Inspection requirements or what equipment to use outside.

On the morning of the great event, Katerina, one of the Unity church congregation came in with a card for me – nine years later, it’s still in my treasures box. It said ‘God is looking after you. Just trust. Let go and let God.’

I think I was just about getting the hint!

An hour later, Al Kilmurray, a former chef and a member of Unity Church, walked into the cafe and simply took over. He organised it all; we just had do what he told us to do. By lunchtime he’d sorted it and gone.

Apart from accidentally shutting the Health Inspector in the freezer for half an hour (she had gone in to test the temperatures) we were all set. But just as we were about to put up our stall in the street, it began to pour with rain. A total disaster for The Taste of Bozeman as not a single stall could go up. Oh God! What was I going to do about the wages and the rent?

As Robin, the staff and I watched the floods in the streets, Al walked in covered in plastic sheeting.

‘Tea!’ he bellowed. ‘Make tea! People need tea not coffee at a time like this and you’re a Brit; you know how to make tea!’

He went outside and started yelling ‘Warm yourself up with a cup of English tea!’

And they came – the people whose dinner had been rained off, came in for a cup of tea. And stayed and ate all the food we had prepared.

Robin, Al and I worked like ten people and by midnight, the rent and the wages were paid. I never saw Al again. He just went back out of state. He died last month, and by one of those strange sychronicities of life, I was privileged to be able to attend his memorial when I returned to Bozeman two weeks ago,

And every night, I rode Spuds the quarter horse with Charlie and watched the eagles fly.

And every Sunday I went to Unity where Philip and the congregation continued to pray for Didi and me.

But the cafe didn’t sell.

Let go and Let God...

All the officials taking care of Didi’s paperwork were so helpful (although every bit of it was new to them). When I realised it all had to be translated into Spanish, Katerina from Unity translated it for me. When I found out that we were six days out of time for Didi’s required Rabies vaccination, the kind vet ‘accidentally’ back-dated the certificate.

‘Your dog is already immune from the vaccine she had less than a year ago in England,’ he said. ‘It’s not a problem. It’s obviously God’s will that you are going to Spain.’

One hitch – completely my fault – I forgot to send the $3 dollar fee to the Spanish Embassy in California for Didi’s export visa. Without that, they couldn’t issue it and we had only three days left before we flew.

My loving hosts, Ris Higgins and Joe Esparza, who run Leadership Outfitters, an amazing executive coaching business that includes horse whispering, tried everything – they called everyone they knew in LA asking them to drive $3 round to the embassy; they phoned a flower delivery company asking for a bouquet with $3 in it to be delivered. They asked a courier company to courier round the cash if we paid for the courier price plus $3. Everyone said no.

We were stuck.

‘No we’re not,’ said Ris. ‘We pray! And then we call the Embassy lady back.’

So that’s just what we did. And when I called her, she said that she’d been thinking about the sweet little dog. And if we FedExed the $3 to her with FedEx reply-paid and faxed her a receipt proving that it had been sent, then she would release Didi’s visa.

The next morning my ride to the airport in Seattle arrived ... Of course we had a lift for the two-day drive to Seattle! I hardly even bothered worrying about that one. My friend Lisa Jeffers from Unity offered to drive us - and Didi’s huge Sky Kennel - in her 4x4.

Just as we were loading up, there was a phone call from the Real Estate Broker.

The cafe had sold.

There was just time to stop off and sign the sale papers before I left Bozeman...

Seven months later, Didcot the beagle was the first dog ever into the UK from the USA, via Spain, on the British Passports for Pets scheme. She lived happily with me in London for four more years.

Thank you Silent Unity and Unity of Bozeman. You taught me how to let go and let God.

In loving memory: Alan Kilmurray.

Wednesday

The Power of Names

When you were a child you must have had a doll, an Action Man, a teddy bear or a pet. Almost certainly they had a name – probably one that you had given to them. And by naming them, you made them real.

T. H. White, the author of The Once and Future King about the legendary King Arthur, tells the story of the creation where God asked Adam to name the animals. This was a contest between man and Lucifer, the greatest of the angels. Lucifer didn’t see why he should be asked to bow down before man. But Adam had the imagination to give the creatures names; he was a creator and Lucifer was not.

All human beings are creators. That’s what it means when the Bible says we are made in the image of God—not that we are physically like God. When we are creating at will, whether it’s a cake or a new company, we feel good. When we are creating to someone else’s order we are less likely to feel good unless it is something that inspires us too.

The idea of a name giving power is simple. If I tell you that I saw a long legged, brown, furry creature with a long nose and brown eyes you could picture a dozen things. If I tell you that I saw a deer, you have a picture at once.

And If I say ‘Bella the deer’ you’ll know that I have some kind of relationship with this deer—it has been in my life for some reason, for some time. After a day or so, I just have to say ‘Bella’ and you know exactly what I’m talking about. And if I say that Bella was killed by a car, you might feel just a little sadness because you can identify with my connection with the deer.

Which brings us to the credit crunch. Until someone gave the economic situation a name it wasn’t real and it didn’t have much power. But now, its name is on every news report and it gets stronger the more it is named.

Remember Harry Potter and “He who shall not be named?” Fair enough, the whole story of Harry’s life was based on the idea that Voldemort had to rise again and the forces of darkness would be combated and finally overcome by the young saviour. And Harry, being young and headstrong chose to name Voldemort publicly again. It all ended happily ever after (after a lot of angst and not a few deaths) because of the ultimate belief in good – in love. And so the credit crunch (I’m not giving it capitals because that makes the difference between a deer and Bella the deer) will dissolve just as soon as enough of us change our minds about it and let go of the power we may have been giving to it.

Remember, money is simply energy. It doesn’t exist on its own; there aren’t actually people moving lumps of gold around each time we go to the supermarket. But the ego thinks that it is real and the ego is always engulfed in the storm that the rest of the tribe is embracing. The soul on the other hand is like a ship; it rides on and above the water and, with inspiration and appreciation of what it has, it is unaffected by the stormy waters below. It creates its own reality.

As always it’s about free will and choice. Free will is at the soul level, not the ego. And if you choose to talk about a credit crunch then you give it power. If you choose to believe in it, you make it real. Okay there are plenty of people choosing to believe in it, but does that mean that you have to? Do you WANT to?

The next objection is usually ‘but it’s true—it has already affected me.’ As Byron Katie says, truth is the result of enough people believing in something. And the Abraham-Hicks teachings show us that if you believe for long enough you can manifest your belief in the physical whether you want it or not.

Remember Peter Pan? Every time someone said ‘I don’t believe in fairies,’ a fairy died. Well if you don’t want a credit crunch, don’t believe in one. I don’t believe in it. I had a personal one a while back and I didn’t like it (although it was that that pushed me into learning about prosperity consciousness). So I’m not going to any power to any crunch that someone else wants to believe in. They can have it if they want to focus on it—that’s completely up to them.

If you want one, believe in it. If you don’t want one, turn away and look at what you do want. No, I know it’s not easy but it’s the way to help everyone not only ourselves. You are the power in your life and your future is created by what you are thinking today.

So this month’s exercise is to start giving good names to things. Name each day – ‘Joy,’ ‘Peace of Mind,’ ‘Restful Paradise,’ ‘Abundance.’ Don’t worry if the days react a bit to this change—they’ve been called ‘Oh God, bleeeeaaah!’ for a long time! But pretty soon the name will take power.

Name your car: ‘Always in Plenty of Time’ is a good name for transport. Name your house: ‘Place of Happiness, Health and Abundance’ is a good name. Name your wallet: ‘Stuffed with Money’ or ‘All My Needs Are Met.’

Name your bed, ‘Good Night’s Sleep’ and your computer ‘Perfect Working Order.’
Have fun with it.

Oh - and take a look at what the Teachings of Abraham have to say on the subject:

Monday

Goldfish, death and intuition

About this time last year, just before we went away on holiday, one of our goldfish (Horace) went off his food. But he had no other symptoms and it's hard to tell when goldfish are sick unless they are actually floating. Something told me I should get him out of the pond as we were going away but there was nowhere else to put him; no one to feed him and, anyway, he hadn't gone a funny colour and he wasn't any age so there was no reason to think it was serious.

By the time we got back from our week away, Horace had died and, in doing so, had poisoned the water. That meant that three other fish, Doris, Boris and Norris had also died (you could tell in which order it happened; I don't need to go into details!). What's more, Chloris, Morris, Forres and the Bunkum fish were all looking rather sick. __We caught the lot, spent a whole day cleaning out the pond and there were no further fatalities.

Just last week, Forres stopped eating. We were due to go away for a long weekend. I got him out and put him into quarantine at once. When we got back, he'd gone to the great pond in the sky and the big container he was in was really rather nasty. But the pond and all the other fish are fine. __Which is a fairly convoluted way of saying we have intuition for a reason! It's that tiny voice that says "Don't you think you should..." or "Why don't you...?" or just spotting something for no particular reason. Examples? You're walking down a High Street and you see an ATM when you don't have any cash. Something tells you to take some out but you don't because you won't be needing cash that day. Then you suddenly do need cash and have to make a special trip to get some.

You suddenly spot a carrier bag while you're on your way out. There's no need to take one so you don't and either the dog suddenly performs on the pavement and you have to fish a bag out of a bin or use leaves to clean it up - or you have to go shopping unexpectedly - and they charge you for a carrier bag.

You see the umbrella hanging next to your keys just as you're about to go out on a lovely sunny day....you get an instinct that a certain pot plant needs watering just as you're going out for the afternoon...something tells you to cross the street at a certain point or you feel particularly drawn to a piece of chicken in the fridge just before you call your Mother ...

Listening to that unprompted little voice is listening to your inner guidance. It's usually quite clear because it's unexpected and, quite frequently, it’s telling you to do something that you don’t particularly want to do because you’re in a hurry to get somewhere else. People often ask me how to tell when it’s ego and when it’s guidance and, from years of getting it wrong, I’d say there are two ways. The first is that it’s not strong enough or insistent enough to be ego. It just suggests and then lets us decide. Ego nags. The other is that it truly is the fabled “still silent voice” and it comes from absolutely nowhere, saying something totally unanticipated.

It gets clearer as we apply the Law of Attraction consciously, spending as much time as possible on things we enjoy doing rather than pushing against stuff. It’s not that God/Spirit/Divinity is ever out of contact with us; it’s everywhere. It’s that we push and push so hard in the direction that we want to go that we don’t listen to what's trying to get in. __My intuition has become much clearer over the last year since I discovered Joe Vitale’s book “Zero Limits” about the Hawaiian process of Ho’oponopono – and followed it up by going to Dr Ihaleakala Hew Len’s Ho’oponopono workshop in London. It’s a very simple process: if you focus on love (they call it “cleaning) then you clear the pain inside and make it easier for intuition to be heard. All you have to do is repeat the affirmation: “I love you, I’m sorry, please forgive me, thank you” in whichever order you like whenever you come across anything that discomforts you (and actually if you do it all the time the effects are amazing).

How this works is by cleaning the ego of uncomfortable data - a gentle psychic colonic if you like. You’re saying it to yourself and to the Divine simultaneously. It works to heal the negativity in the ego because that part of your psyche doesn’t know who’s saying it. For example, when you remember something nasty someone said to you, it’s YOU who are saying it to yourself later just by repeating it. It’s not them – they’re off somewhere else completely. So if you apologise to yourself or say “I love you” then as far as your inner child is concerned, the love and apology could be coming from any of the people who did hurt you. It is lovely to have those who have hurt you apologise and love you...so the ego relaxes and lets go of the pain.

I’ve actually repeated the mantra to people sitting with their eyes shut in a workshop and they’ve all had tears in their eyes within a couple of minutes. It feels so wonderful to have someone say “I love you, I’m sorry, please forgive me, thank you.” They all heard it coming from whom they most wanted to say it to them.

Can it be that simple? Oh yes. And it works for all money matters too. As soon as you feel any financial pressure or fear or lack just swing into the affirmation. Then the old data which is causing the pain can be dissolved. And as you clean, you open your energy lines to spirit and the promptings of your higher self. __So this month, clean, clean, clean. Use that mantra as much as you can and as often as you can. Then you won’t have to learn about intuition the hard way with a pond full of dead fish.

Thursday

Awakening the Soul

All poverty is first experienced in the soul.

This quotation from Sarah Ban Breathnach stopped me dead in my tracks when I first read it. I’ve always loved Sarah’s work since being given a copy of her Simple Abundance, a Day Book of Comfort and Joy when my heart and pride had been broken by the end of a marriage. She’s got it right in just the same way that the mystical interpretation of the tithing system has it right – first, inspiration, second, celebration and then everything else.

Sarah teaches that a gratitude journal is vital for life. Some of you will already be counting your blessings each day but it’s such an easy thing to forget to do – and yes, it does affect the soul if we are not grateful for what we have. Without appreciation, life is tougher than it need be.

Poverty is lack-consciousness. It has nothing whatsoever to do with how much money you actually have, it’s how you feel about your life. You can be dead broke but you won't be poor if you have prosperity consciousness in your soul. The difference is that you don't feel that horrible dragging inside - the fear of poverty. And if you are broke and can lift your spirits to nurture your soul, then the physical lack will ease automatically. It has to. You can't push poverty away; you can only inspire yourself to dissolve it.

Start small - baby steps always work. Try and be hugely inspired in one lump and you may well over-stretch yourself. It really doesn’t cost anything to go for a walk and enjoy the beauty of nature – wherever you are. And even the most litter-splattered park has moments of beauty in it which can lift the heart – if we make sure that we look for them.

When I was dead broke and working too hard and too long at a job that was just about making the rent, I discovered that all the pain and tension and debt from the dead relationship had lead me to get high blood pressure. It was all the pushing against that caused it - pushing against how I felt; against the job; against the fear. I didn’t want to go down the medical line of drugs and after a lot of research, I found that hawthorn tea really helped me. But the hawthorn leaves and berries from Culpepper were really expensive. So I asked the Universe to help me find some cheaper alternative.

As I was only just beginning to climb out of poverty consciousness, it took me a full three months of walking the dog before I realised that hawthorn leaves and berries were available to anyone practically anywhere…they just needed to be picked and dried and stored. I can remember just standing there on the pathway looking up at all this abundance that I had totally missed before and realising that I was finally on the real path to prosperity. I had asked for help and the filters of lack had been peeled away from my eyes.

It’s nine years now since I picked and dried my first hawthorn – and I still drink a cup of the tea each morning just for the pleasure of it.

Another day, when I was still broke and I’d been to see a friend who lived in the country, I picked the gleanings from a wheat field – the leftover heads of corn that hadn’t been picked up by a combine harvester. I ground them up and they made three loaves of bread. Admittedly it was heavy as a rock but it tasted delicious – and it healed my soul with the process of making it from scratch. It was an achievement; a creation. All we humans are children of a creator so we must also create in order to be happy - no matter how big or how small.

Only recently I thought I might benefit from some red clover but shied away from paying £18 or more for capsules from the chemist. I can afford it but I’m a Taurean and that just seemed an horrendous amount of money for a few tablets!

But I remembered the hawthorn tea and considered that the odds were pretty high that red clover grew wild somewhere fairly close. I found it on the very next dog walk; I’d just never looked before.

Incidentally I live in Birmingham, England, which is a big industrial city so it’s not (yet!) as though I walk out of my house into the countryside. But I find my treasures on the morning dog walks. Now that we live in the suburb of Moseley, most of those are along the River Cole and at Moseley Bog – the place that inspired J. R. R. Tolkien as a child. I didn’t even know it existed until I moved here and was looking for places to take the beagle.

And this last weekend, having been tempted by a wonderful sea trout at the local farmer’s market, I spent nearly all of Sunday cooking. Steaming fish with spring onion, ginger and chillies, making a (very odd!) salad with the vegetables I’ve grown in the garden despite the interesting summer weather this year, and baking a lemon meringue pie. So what? You say. Simple pleasures, say I. I wasn’t cooking for a dinner party, I was cooking for me – and primarily for the joy of it. My husband and Mum enjoyed the results but because I’d had such a wonderful time cooking the whole meal just glowed with love and gratitude.

So the message this month is “Look for the Simple Abundance.” Take joy in the little things; the birds, the plants, the sky – for the Brits among you, have you seen Jupiter in the night sky this last month? It’s incredible even to the naked eye!

Every day, simple gratitudes for a cup of tea, a lovely flower, a butterfly or a funny email even are the fuel for the soul. Your soul is your eternal self; it needs your attention and it needs your focus on joy. If you soul is filled with peace, gratitude and love then not even the objections of the ego-mind can stop the abundance flowing to you.

Monday

Microbes

From a book called Talks on Truth by the founder of Unity Church, Charles Fillmore:

So the fears, the doubts, the poverty, the sin, the sickness, the thousand erroneous states of consciousness have their microbes. These organisms whose office it is to make men miserable do their work to the very best of their ability. They are not responsible for their existence; they are the formed vehicles of thought, and are the servants of those who gave them life.

So it is not to the microbes that the wise regulator of affairs should look, but to those who are creating them and thereby bringing into existence discord and disease.

When we think God thoughts we will form only the beauties of nature and mankind, and there will no longer be anything in all this world that will cause a fear or a moment of pain.


When Charles Fillmore was writing 100 years ago, microbes were a brand new concept to science. He made the link between thoughts and physical sickness – and both he and his wife, Myrtle, healed themselves of apparently incurable diseases through changing their thought processes.

A while back, I thought I’d mix Charles Fillmore’s ideas with one from the Abraham-Hicks book ‘Ask and It is Given’ (Hay House). The idea was to try and dissolve old, painful microbes (in their thousands if not millions) that still infested my mind and came up at difficult times. The idea would be the invention of new God-microbes. By which I mean very, very tiny and gentle changes of mind – not even amounting to affirmations.

While denial and affirmation are very, very powerful, they can sometimes set up powerful resistance from our egos. So I’ve spent the last four weeks changing my thoughts by microscopic amounts – gentling it rather than commanding it.

Having lived through several bad bouts of fear – death of first husband, emigration that went very wrong, divorce, redundancy and 11 house moves in five years (yada, yada, yada!), I did have a strong echo of fear in the depths of my mind. Horrible microbes that tended to re-infect clearer thoughts.

I’ve worked this for 30 days together with going into the silence every day in a regular meditation before starting work. In the prayer before the first meditation I asked why I found negative thoughts so hard to banish for good. The answer came in an image of my fridge – in that on the surface it looks okay but it hasn’t had a thorough, deep cleanse for months so that underneath the apparent cleanliness are dirt microbes. Ditto the rest of the house. Oh bother!

The best way to cleanse most things is long, gentle soaking. So I have spent the days soaking my internal microbes with a very simple statement from the Abraham book: ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if…’ and spare hours cleaning the house too…

The ‘wouldn’t it be nice’ phrase sounds really wimpy but that’s just the point. It stirs up absolutely no reaction from my ego because it can’t disagree and it changes every negative impulse microbe by microbe.

Instead of jumping to a radical new thought from a negative old one, I can shift Universes slowly and steadily without out-facing myself at any point. Even more importantly, I ALLOW the anger, depression, overwhelmed feeling by acknowledging it.

Example:

Source thought: I’m depressed and overwhelmed:

Microbe healing:

Wouldn’t it be nice if I didn’t feel like this?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I could be feeling a bit better?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I could actually do something about it?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I could think of something positive?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I could have something nice for my breakfast?
Wouldn’t it be nice if the first phone call of the day was a really prosperous one?
Wouldn’t it be nice if the day worked out really well?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I ended up feeling very positive?
Wouldn’t it be nice if that original feeling actually meant it was a brilliant day?

I really worked. Within four days I was spotting negative microbes and applying this very gentle positive cleansing. Once I had spent a minute or so on the ‘wouldn’t it be nices’ I could move into a positive affirmation clearly and powerfully.

It even worked with the night fears (at that time we had just won a huge contract to publish the C. S. Lewis Narnia books in the Russian language worldwide and had no knowledge of Russian!). From ‘we can’t do this,’ came ‘wouldn’t it be nice if it all worked out really easily? Wouldn’t it be nice if all the help we need now would come quickly?’ and so on until ideas (and help) began to come.

And not only did we swiftly find Russian and American distributors but we did the work right on schedule.

It also helped when I got a communication from a British Church group who had offered me work in outreach/marketing as well as running prosperity seminars - and who then decided to change their minds.

Wouldn’t it be nice if I wasn’t cross (!)
Wouldn’t it be nice if this meant something better was coming for me?
Wouldn’t it be nice if they were right – and this paved the way for a better future for them too?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I could actually see that!
Wouldn’t it be nice if none of this mattered anyway and I knew it was all working out in Divine Order?

And then I could go straight into the affirmation: “I have wonderful work, in a wonderful way. I give wonderful service for wonderful pay.”

Almost immediately, another group – which is closer to my home invited me to do a day’s workshop on Exodus, the Metaphysics of the Bible and, when I’d done that, asked me to lead their Christmas candlelight service. Marvellous!

And another group entirely offered to set up a workshop for me in Shropshire. All because I allowed the crossness and transformed it slowly into something more positive.

So I recommend it as an exercise - to cleanse the microbes in your mind with ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if…?’ Here are some suggestions.

Wouldn’t it be nice if Christmas was fun this year?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I were earning more money?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I could love someone who loved me?
Wouldn’t it be nice if this prosperity stuff really worked? (!)
Wouldn’t it be nice if I found the perfect work?
Wouldn’t it be nice if I had an enjoyable day today?
Wouldn’t it be nice if my best friend phoned?
Wouldn’t it be nice if the next ‘you’ve won the lottery’ email was genuine instead of a scam!
Wouldn’t it be nice to feel happy?
Wouldn’t it be nice to ….. over to you.

Thursday

Resonance

I love the word ‘resonance.’ It’s alliterative: rezzzzzonance! And it describes so well how the Law of Attraction works. As the Abraham teachings say "That which is like unto itself is drawn." So when we resonate with what we want, then our vibration is identical to the vibration of its reality in our life – and it must come.

But vibration is as precise as the keys on a piano and you know how a piece of music can grate when there is just one note wrong. So it’s really important to try and raise our vibrations as often as we can and for as long as we can.

A lot of the time we experience the "switching the kettle off just before it boils" syndrome which means that we think of something we want; affirm for it and believe that it’s on its way so much that we even get goosebumps.

But two or three days later, when it hasn’t arrived, we wonder why – and we switch off that vibrational kettle of manifestation with the simple noticing that what we wanted hasn’t arrived. And every other day when it hasn’t arrived, that thought achieves more power and the kettle gets turned off earlier and earlier.

Another analogy is a situation to which I am slightly prone – I’ll plant some seeds in a pot and then, if they don’t come up as fast as I think they should, I’ll keep checking on them and disturbing the earth and maybe even digging them up to see what’s going on.

In a nutshell you can’t resonate with happiness and wealth when you’re wondering why it hasn’t come yet. Tough call? Certainly but it leads to the ultimate quest in all Prosperity Consciousness – to be so happy in the present moment that you feel as though it (whatever it may be) has already come. You are so happy that you don’t even mind one way or another because you are simply happy. And of course, when you are so happy, prosperity comes.

Often, one of the simple helpers here is to make a small change in the day’s routine or your habitual clothing – dress or act as you will when the desired outcome is already here. If you are looking for love, then float down the High Street with a beautific smile in your sexiest clothes as though you were just coming away from a romantic tryst. If you want to travel abroad, have your passport, sunshine clothes and holiday insurance piled up ready on the dressing table – oh, and get that suitcase down.

A funny thing has just happened – I’ve just this minute had a telephone call from a company specialising in oveseas conveyancing. About a year ago I registered on a website which shows houses for sale in Italy as Peter and I have been thinking about getting a holiday home. And suddenly, out of the blue, as I’m writing this, someone who would do all the legal work and help us find a place shows up.

Yes, there was a temptation to say "no, not yet" but that would have been switching my kettle off. We have been thinking of taking a quick flight out to Pisa to take a first look at what’s available. I think I’d better get onto the internet!

Can you see how it works? Move forwards with the impulse. If you want the extra money start looking at what you want to do with it; check out your priorities and plan your purchases. And then visualise yourself already with them. If that little "but it’s not here there" bug comes along, hit it with a mental frying pan and say "that’s only because of you!"

Then have some more fun visualising and planning. If you make that part of it the focus of everything – having fun NOW – then it’s much easier.

Oh – please don’t put any negative energy into China and Tibet! There’s a rush of attention on the Tibetan issue because of the Olympic games. Far better to visualise peace and happiness in both countries than to complain. It’s fairly simple to visualise a free Tibet and a happy China! Feels better too.

Speaking of which – if you want to visualise for World Peace each full moon, contact the Rising Phoenix Organisation . They have a free downloadable peace meditation which all the supporters of that site do every full moon. Always better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.

Remember that you can now see me on YouTube

And check out my books on Amazon:

The Old Stories Are The Best

This old legend was sent to me by my friend Michael Wetzler in response to one of my prosperity mail-outs.

An old Jewish man and his wife lived in the country near the time of the great Jewish holy man, the Baal Shem Tov. They were very poor, and all they had was a scrawny old cow. They accepted the life they felt that they had been given.

One day, the old man met the Baal Shem Tov, who had come to their area. The Baal Shem was with a few of his advisors, and asked the man if he could come for a meal that evening. The man was honoured and went back to his wife, but they were desparate they did not know how they could afford to feed the assembled company. The man knew the only thing he could do was sell the scrawny cow. So that night there was a sumptuous feast for the Baal Shem and
his entourage.

They ate the couple out of house and home, and then left.

After they had left the wife acknowledged that now they were in an even worse state...the husband was desparate. He did not know what to do, so went out into the forest, and prayed with all his might for all the things that they had never had.....At that moment he heard a noise and he saw an old man lying and groaning on the ground. He went to help, and the man looking up at him, saw a loving kind face, and was grateful. He told him he was dying, but the old Jewish man said no, all he needed was a little support and comfort and he would be well. As he lay there the man told the story of how he had lived and made much money, and now all his family wanted him for was the money, and they didn't care. He was pleased because he had now buried it all, and they could not get at it.

Then he put his hand in his pocket, saying he wanted to repay the kindness and warm heart of the old jewish man....as he did this he died. However he had removed a slip from his pocket which turned out to be the map to the buried treasure!

A year later the Baal Shem tov and his retinue passed the Old Jewish man and his wife in a stately carriage, and looking as if they had no care in the world.

The students asked the Baal Shem Tov, amazed, how that poor old man with nothing could suddenly be like that.

The Baal Shem Tov smiled and replied: "Before we came, the man and his wife made do with what they had. They never asked for more. They never thought they could have more. They just had and lived with the scrawny old cow. We had to help them get rid of the scrawny old cow, so that the old man could really pray and ask for what he needed.

"When HaShem [the Lord] heard the depth of his prayers, he was ready to respond, and so he did."

There are two important points to the story - firstly, what is your scrawny cow? What is it that you hold onto for security - because without it you fear you would have nothing? If you are seeking proseperity, there will be something. I found four scrawny old cows in my life thanks to Michael's sending me the story - and three of them have already gone. It was quite scary but, as one of them was a means of making a living for me (but which I had stopped enjoying doing), it made me ASK for what I do want. I hadn't done so in that area before because I didn't have the time or the ability to travel - because I had to attend to my scrawny old cow!

Getting rid of this particular 'cow' had some guilt feelings attached because it was something that serves others and there's the slight 'you're letting people down' syndrome. But you know what? That's a scrawny cow too. And guess what? Someone else who will truly enjoy the work has already jumped at the opportunity to take my place!

The other thing is to note that the old man and his wife didn't have any trouble in accepting the treasure! Jewish people can teach us a lot about attitudes to money - they don't have the spirituality-poverty consciousness that other faiths have developed. If the idea of keeping the treasure makes you feel uncomfortable it's because of an inherent feeling of a lack of self-worth which is worth examining. Of course it's wonderful to be generous and give to others but think of it like this: You have a car and you want to give other people lifts to places - that's great. But you must fuel, service, maintain, clean and take general care of that car otherwise the lifts you offer will be uncomfortable, ineffective and unsuccessful - they won't help others at all. And if you have a lovely, elegant, powerful car in full working order (which I do, thank God!) then not only can you offer great lifts but you can inspire other people to learn prosperity consciousness - and they too can teach it on.

Monday

The Conditions...

Last month a friend begged me to publish a particular prayer in our magazine The Tree of Life (which you can see online at www.treeoflifemagazine.com). It was a prayer to Jesus for healing [insert name here] but it would only work if the prayer was published and passed on.

In the end I published it in my blog - you can see it in the next blog down - because she was so upset and needed the favour so much. Not because I thought that fulfilling the condition made any difference to the prayer.

And of course there have been this month’s usual rash of conditional emails – you’ll have good luck if you send this on; please forward this because AOL/Microsoft etc will pay money if it goes to a million people…or money will be raised for a little girl who’s been dying of cancer for more than eight years now…

I got a round-robin email sending all this up today – with the conclusion reading:

“If you don't send this e-mail to at least 144,000 people in the next 70 minutes, a large dove with diarrhoea will land on your head at 5:00 PM this afternoon and the fleas from 12 camels will infest your back, causing you to grow a hairy hump. I know this will occur because it actually happened to a friend of my next door neighbour’s ex-mother-in-law's second husband's cousin's beautician...” which at least gave me a laugh!

So why do so many of us still pass these conditional (even threatening) emails on? They are, essentially, chain letters and we fear that if we don’t do what we are told, we will be in trouble.

Well hey there, that’s a perfect reflection of our belief about the Source – or, to put it more accurately, God. So many of us use ‘Source,’ ‘Higher Self’ etc instead of God purely because we have the idea of the vengeful, angry old man in the sky. But there’s no use just changing the name without the belief.

Those old religious beliefs about unworthiness, having to suffer to get what we want and it not being spiritual to be rich are still out there. I asked a woman at one of my talks the other day whether she believed that women should cover their hair at all times; whether they should be subject to their husbands and whether they should not speak in public. She said “Of course not”. And yet she was totally wedded to another of St Paul’s phrases (misquoted) “Money is the root of all evil” and felt she couldn’t possibly ask for any.

But if you take one teaching, you really must take them all! And if one is doubtful, you must check them all out!

Now, to be fair, St Paul’s teaching about women was probably only sensible and practical at a time when the self-castrated male priests of Cybele wore loose long hair, women’s clothing and prophesied in the streets about a resurrected son of a virgin. Those priests were likely to be murdered in the streets as an abomination to right-thinking Romans. And any Christian woman doing the same would probably be mistaken for a priest of Cybele and meet the same fate. And no other religion allowed women to prophesy in the streets so for a Christian woman to do it would also have been as extraordinary as wearing your knickers on your head.

AND St Paul’s actual teaching about money is this:

“Having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

Somewhat more kindly translated from the Greek it means:

“Having sustenance (food, all bills paid, holidays four times a year in Jerusalem and enough to cover tax and council tax) and covering (a house of our own without mortgage, suitable clothing for all events, furniture and clothing), let us be therewith content.
"But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
For the avarice is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

Not many of us would be avaricious if we had everything we needed provided. And it is true that seeking money for money’s sake (addictive gambling etc.) can hurt us. So St Paul wasn’t so far off the mark.

And yet, that one phrase ‘money is the root of all evil’ has been the greatest inhibitor of wealth in so many spiritual people for centuries. It’s even assumed to be taught by Jesus – or be direct from the mouth of God.

It’s just one bloke saying what he thinks with his own loading. Nothing more. It’s not God telling you that it’s wrong to be prosperous – even wealthy.

Jesus’ own teachings about money we can deal with another time – but basically they are the same, that you can have whatever you want but don’t plan to hold onto it so that it holds you back in your life.

So, back to conditions. God/Source is NOT conditional. When it comes to prosperity, It doesn’t give a stuff whether you are good or bad. If you are prosperous it is because you have prosperity consciousness which the Universe recognizes and to which it responds. And that you are willing and able to receive the great abundance which pours down on us all 24/7.

So this month’s exercise is to realize that the Source is neutral; that happiness and prosperity are in your choice, not doled out to the worthy by a judgmental God who loads you down with conditions. It is YOUR conditional thinking that causes the problem. These emails are just demonstrating it back to you if you even consider passing them on.

So, stop sending on conditional emails. It’s quite easy to cut the threat off at the end if they are otherwise lovely. Then, if you are not putting conditions on others, then the Universe will stop putting conditions on you….

And try this very simple affirmation: “Thank you for my wonderful prosperity consciousness.” Believe me, it works.

Tuesday

Prayer for a friend

A friend asked me to post the following for her as apparently the prayer depends upon publication. Ask and it is given...So here it is...


The Miraculous Prayer
Dear heart of Jesus, in the past I have asked for many favours, this time I ask You this very special one.{mention favour} Take it dear heart of Jesus, and place it within your own broken heart where your Father sees it. Then in His merciful eyes, it will become Your favour not mine. Amen. Say for three days, promise publication and your favour will be granted. Never known to fail. JS

Sunday

Prosperity course March 2008

Hi Everyone,
March rather crept up on me this year! Just a quick note to say that I am putting together a five-CD set of the "Activating The Secret Courses" that I am running in the Midlands of England. These are really life-enhancing courses with some incredible results! If any of you are seriously interested, I can do the five-week evening course in a day so get in touch with me at mw@pureprosperity.com if you want to organise one in your area.
NB the www.pureprosperity.com website may be down for a day or so as it's moving servers.
Wishing you a lovely Easter,
Maggy
Prosperity Email for March.
You know the term "baggage" and, if you've read Eckhart Tolle's "The Power of Now" you know that one of the names that can be used for our baggage is "the pain body."
It's the pain body that holds us back when we are trying to move on to the next stage in our prosperity consciousness. Now, there are those who say that there is no truth in the idea that we have to suffer at all as we move towards the light and, to a certain extent, they are right.
The trouble is that I still believe in pain. Not as much as I used to do but, as I can still experience it, I obviously believe in it! And if it's in my life, then I need techniques to deal with it. And maybe you do too.
So, you have a pain body. That's the old familiar horrid feeling you get when something goes wrong. We all know it - and depending on our astrology and other blueprint stuff it either feels fearful, anxious, despairing, hopeless - or all of those.
The thing is, it isn't YOU. It's actually a separate entity that lives within you. No, that doesn't mean that it's an alien presence or a dead soul that's attached to you or that you're being attacked by lizards, it means that it's a self-created energy field that feeds on your negative emotions.
So, if it feeds on emotions, it's in its interests to find circumstances that are emotionally charged. Has it a consciousness to do this? No. But it does have a sub-conscious ability to focus on events and people who fit its criteria for pain.
For example, for some reason you turn on the television when there's a documentary or an appeal or a drama that pushes all your buttons. Or your mother throws an off-the-cuff remark at you that you react to without thinking and suddenly there's an old issue surfacing big-time.
So, how to deal with it (thank you Eckhart Tolle!). I've added a bit to his idea which I think helps even more...
You close your eyes, think of your biggest problem - probably prosperity? - and feel the negative emotion around it. Then you visualise the feeling and/or the problem itself as some kind of image. For example, a grumbling old woman or a fizzy, electric, black ball of string...whatever works for you.
Once you are visualising it - seeing it - start saying "I (name) see you (whatever) pain." As in "I, Maggy, see you, Fear of Judgment." As you say that, you separate the "I" - the real you - from the pain - the illusion.
Once you can see the pain body as a separate entity, the emotion goes; it can't survive unless you are feeding it with consciousness.
The other thing to do is to give it a name. Something that works for you in emphasising that it is NOT you but a separate being. Silly names work for me - like Fifi or Fido or Bunkum.
Then, if you practice, daily looking at the pain as being separate from you, a time will soon come when you feel sparked into the pain and will be able to think: "Oh! That's Fifi! It's not me..."
And then, you're on the way towards a full and lasting recovery from the pain...
An old friend of mine once said that the most important part of Jesus's crucifixion was his dying - not the pain of the crucifixion itself nor the resurrection. She said that as soon as we are willing to give up the pain (die to the pain) then resurrection is a done deal. Makes sense to me. It's the pain body that crucifies us day after day - so if you can get it outside of you by observation (and give it a VERY silly name) then, resurrection is the naturally occurring result.
So, bung those financial fears into a ball of black string, separate them out from you, give them a silly name, and watch the pain levels subside. It's not an overnight job but, with perseverence, it really, really works.
Happy Easter!

Friday

The Freebies

Following on from the previous - about when to give freebies and when not - some lovely stuff sent to me by my friend Barbara from Rebecca Marina's website Celebration Healing.

Rebecca says (and how I agree with her) that there are two main reasons why therapists get asked for freebies.

1/ They don't have enough self-esteem to value their work

2/ They have a Saviour of the World complex - as in "I must do everything I can to save you (forget about me!)"

I've had both...the Saviour of the World part is the trickier of the two...I finally cracked that one when learning about Ho'oponopono which teaches very simply that you can't help anyone but yourself...but if you help yourself, others get better too.

This is what Rebecca writes:

"But Rebecca, who is going to take care of all the poor and downtrodden people in the world?" Well, I don't know... would you like to keep doing it for the rest of your life? Or, are you ready to let some other "up and coming practitioner" take their turn?
Even Jesus said, "The Poor will always bewith us."

When we're starting out we all do a lot of free work. It's actually 'exchanging energy work' in those days because we get to learn on our clients so it's a genuine two-way process.

But later on, when we're moving into our own power, it's time to really value who we are and say 'no,' if you want my services for free, you're not ready for them. If you don't want to pay (or offer a fair exchange) for them then you aren't going to value them - and they won't work for you.'

When I was seriously broke, I weeded the garden for a friend...there's always something you can do as an exchange if you really want to grow.

So, more work on self required (what a surprise!) Or, rather, perhaps more play with self required...

Thursday

Surely the more you give, the more you get back?

Anyone who's seen The Secret http://thesecret.tv knows about the Law of Attraction - which is simply the way that this Universe operates as in 'what you put out you get back.'A friend of mine who's doing some advertising for our magazine, Tree of Life http://www.treeoflifemagazine.com wanted to offer advertisers a special offer on top of an existing special offer. I said 'no' and she said 'surely the more you give, the more you get back?'In theory, yes. But I think it only works the way we'd like it to work if we're actually willing to receive as well as give.
And in business, it’s a bit on the crazy side to give special offers which mean that you can’t pay the print bill (let alone your colleague!) from the revenue that you are offering to others.
Yes, I know it’s true that the money can come from somewhere else but you have to clear about the motivation for giving. And if you don’t want to give it, then it really won’t benefit anyone if it is given…because it’s not a gift it’s a resentment.
And it’s no use jumping to ‘you should be more enlightened than that’ because that’s just adding blame to resentment.
We are allowed to be human! The lovely lady wanted to make the special, special offer to support those potential advertisers who couldn’t afford a ‘proper’ ad.
I do realise that the people who most need prosperity are the ones who don't have it (it’s a blinding flash of the bleedin' obvious but bear with me...) but if I gave extra discounts would I actually be supporting them? Are they ready to advertise their therapy work if they are not willing to promote themselves? And if I gave people the special, special offer, how could I tell the Universe that I want to be paid directly for my work? My accountant is brilliant but she and the tax man do like to have some definite trail to follow on outgoings and income.Yes, if I were enlightened, I could sit and meditate all day and have everything I desired come to me...but, sorry, I'm not that enlightened and anyway I want to walk the dog…So I think the art of giving and receiving is something that is a little more complex than just giving more and more.Interestingly, while I was thinking about this, I had a phone call from someone who wants me to come and do a free talk for her group to promote a six-week course I do on 'Activating the Secret' (see www.pureprosperity.com). It was slightly dispiriting because originally she was going to book me for the course itself...then she was going to book me for one evening at a small fee...and now she said the group wanted me to speak for one session for free.I said I'd ring her back and I had a think. Once I'd got my head around it and got over the slight irritation of the change of plan I knew that it was fair enough...it's a 'loss-leader.' I called her back with good grace and said 'yes, okay.'But within an hour of saying yes to that freebie, I had a phone call from a woman to whom I'd previously offered a discount on a workshop who said she couldn't afford it and could she come for free?An hour after that, I had a call from a client from a previous workshop who hasn't done any of the homework I'd suggested wanting me to give her more (different) advice for free over the phone.And half an hour later I had someone come to the door asking me to buy things that I didn't want or need in order to support him (often I will buy from these people - but there was nothing I could possibly want in his bag and he didn't present his case with any grace!)And another hour later I had a phone call from someone wanting a private session for free who spent 10 minutes telling me how awful she was and how her life was a mess before I could get a word in edgeways.If I had said yes to all those people, would the Universe have re-imbursed me later? I don't think so - because I wouldn't have been valuing me and my work.In fact, I gave all four of them (including the doorstop seller) some concentrated listening time and, to all of the prosperity seekers, I gave two exercises or techniques that they could do to start the process of turning their lives around. Not one of them listened. They didn't want to make the commitment to working themselves. Instead they wanted me to see them for free; they thought that I could do the work for them and heal their problems.Which I couldn't possibly do.I run a monthly free prosperity e-letter and I run a monthly prosperity support group for £5 and there is plenty of free advice to get people started on my website so I have resources available for those who simply can't pay. You can also get my books and Tree of Life magazine from your local library. And I know from my own experience that you can get from a 'can't pay' to 'want to move on and can pay' space from doing those exercises because that's exactly what I did after my own life fell apart. Without free books from the library (it was before the Internet took off) I might well have stayed in trouble but I was desperate enough to do the work - and it worked.And, I have a confession to make (which I may regret!) I always give one free workshop per quarter. But I give it to the person who seems to me to be the one who would most benefit from it. Someone who is already doing the work in some way. And when I give it from my heart, then it both works for the receiver and for me.So this Law of Attraction is a funny thing...if we apply it with a feeling that our heart is sinking it will bring us more heart-sinking experiences. But if we apply it with happiness then it will repay.But we have to remember our own worth all along.