Mindful Monday Matters greetings for this last week of August & our New Thought Families focus on fortitude ~ our Fortitude page is on the site and among other, colorful comments on the subject, we define fortitude as:
Strength of mind, conviction & noble courage. To face pain or fear bravely. To embrace life with renewable energy.
Our daily Play & Pray Calendar has multi-media messages of moving forward with faith & fortitude running through the end of this week. Before we move on to September’s Oneness theme, I wanted to really shine the spotlight on the often forgotten virtue of fortitude. Thereby, this week’s post is framed with a Formula for Fortitude with a few re-caps of the other August posts & a few highlights from life this week sprinkled in the discussion. If you’d rather skip all the commentary, the bullet list, blog scan version is:
Formula for Fortitude:
Yesness of Forgiveness & Blessedness
Energy & Vitality of Honesty
Be Naïve & Believe: How You Perceive & Conceive is How You Achieve
Open to Freedom & Discipline for a Win-Win
To live life with an attitude of gratitude is the force that will facilitate fortitude to not only carry us on through life’s ups & downs but actually allow us to appreciate & enJOY the lives we are co-creating. In our first post this month on August 7th, I talked about our Feathers Of Faith Family camp & how, for me, processing grief, allowing acceptance of what was, feeling gratitude for all of it & experiencing such joy in the end was faith filled fortitude. In my ongoing commitment to be happy for no reason & happy for every reason, gratitude is the #1 tool in the Spiritual Toolbox. Truly, there is always something to be grateful for and when we are appreciating, we can not be deprecating. One gives us life & the other sucks the life right out of us! Abraham Hicks talks of the ‘Rampage Of Appreciation’ which will raise your Spirits & vibration in a moment or less ~ just start giving thanks for anything & everything within sight, smell, touch, feel … The Gratitude Attitude will help fortify you in any moment!
If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice. ~ Meister Eckhart
Yesness of Forgiveness & Blessedness:
I have come into knowing the power of yesness … I consider yes a ‘ness’ in this way as it means embodying a way of being. Sometimes saying yes can leave you feeling like a fool but that’s only without accepting what is with gratitude ~ employing forgiveness as necessary & seeing the blessings always present as a gift. In many posts here including last week’s Fortifying Forgiveness, I have spoken of radical forgiveness from Colin Tipping which affirms that everything is always working for our highest good and as such, our soul helps to orchestrate people & events for our spiritual growth. In this context, there is nothing to forgive, only gratitude is called upon. Still, our hearts can break for ourselves & others and it is a conscious choice to employ forgiveness & yesness as needed. When we do this, we become aware of the blessings we have, feeding the strength & fortitude of our very soul to keep fueling our forward footsteps.
Energy & Vitality of Honesty:
Fortitude will indeed help fuel our dreams & the perseverance often needed to achieve them. This force requires honesty. As we get older, we sometimes hide from our dreams; stop listening to our hearts & inner whisperings in favor of a more ‘reality based’ way of living. We can end up in jobs or relationships that not only don’t feed us or our dreams but conversely suck the life right out of them and us! The sometimes not so simple act of being honest with ourselves & others goes a long way towards energy & vitality. This weekend, I was at a family wedding and when the lovely young bride through the bouquet, I bravely stood with the other (much!) younger hopefuls. Now, ok, my bravery didn’t entail actually crossing the room to get in the queue, it happened to be right where we were seated so I basically had to just stand up and take a few steps. And though I stood there in my truth that I would still love to be married in this lifetime, my 50 year old face was beet red, I am sure. Still, no one pointed & laughed at me (that I know of!) and even if they did, I was ok with it. The bouquet didn’t land anywhere near me and I was ok with that too. It was simply my willingness to be publically honest with myself & others, that has given me more energy & vitality to inch towards my next steps … ~ I have vowed to do the online dating profile things and I have readied the fish bowl for a new fish friend I have already named Romeo ~ I know it’s all kinda silly stuff but I honestly don’t care! I’d rather be a fortified fool than one with a forsaken dream!
Be Naïve & Believe: How You Perceive & Conceive is How You Achieve
It is our judgments that most often block the flow of Love; we discussed this in some ways with the metaphysical look at the bible story featuring Zacchaeus in our Sacred Strength post on August 12th. One reason young children love so freely is that they are not in judgment. I have always learned so much from children ~ it is their very sense of naïve acceptance, play & silliness that inspires us all! I have often been told that (my) being naïve is a bad thing so imagine my delight in this quote from the amazing Buckminster Fuller that came through our wondrous Dream Team member Kanta Bosniak’s art:
Kanta has captured so many inspirational people in her art series and has shared many of them with us on her New Thought Families page. What change makers like Fuller & Einstein have all employed is the capacity to perceive & conceive with an innocence, a wide open curiosity. This capacity feeds right into the last ingredient in our Fortitude Formula:
Be Open to Freedom & Discipline for a Win-Win:
The way I see the fabulous virtue of fortitude, it feeds us and we feed it with a dance of freedom & discipline. Through disciplined actions, we receive freedoms; when I am disciplined about getting exercise, my body, mind & Spirit feel freer. When I am disciplined about cleaning closets, I am free to find things when I need them. In creating a business that is blissness, discipline has aided me in building the Leaping Literacy Library with hundreds of Laurie StorEBooks. The deliciousness of openness has opened a whole other door this year in the context of these eBooks. All of a sudden, after 20 + years, my eyes opened to the inadequacy of some of my book illustrations. The old felt pieces I had used in live performances & had scanned digitally suddenly started screaming at me. The 7+ years of doing New Thought Families web design & photography has come into play as did latent mixed media art creations I started doing last fall … I have always done my best to say yes to Spirit co-creations even when I don’t know where they are going … discipline in continuing to say yes to my heart, the best I can and the openness & freedom to let Spirit flow through me at the pace of grace. The persistence of resistance can show up to wrestle with grace but again, devoted discipline to a daily practice of opening to Spirit generally keeps things flowing. In short, we are always winning ~ everything in our lives, the bad, the good, all of it judged or not, is used for the perfection of Spirit’s evolution in us, through us, as us.
For any still reading, thank you for your faith filled fortitude! I do know formulas are often way less wordy! Before closing, last week’s Mindful Meditation Invitation, was to go within & ask our body temples, where we may need healing and how we can bloom from any hard, stuck areas. After this month’s exploration of fortitude and my own looks here & at home at unexpected neighbors, life changes including back to school, back to work, boy to teenager, aging parent(s) & health issues, cellular healing, the power of honesty & dedication to dreams … let’s make this week’s Mindful Meditation Invitation to follow any aspect of the Fortitude Formula laid out here or in your own heart to see where faith & your fortitude filled feet are calling you … wherever it is, it is surely into deeper expansion & expression of the gift of you. Namaste sweet Love!