#YEGSecularSundayWalk 11am-12pm

1343 Relax and Succeed - Nature always wears the colors of the spirit

While the walk will happen this long weekend, please note that the time has permanently changed to 11am. Sleep is also a form of meditation, so a later start time should enable everyone even more time at peace. 🙂

 

#YEG Secular Sunday Walks

11:00am-Noonish
Sundays

6750 – 88th Street
Argyll Community Hall

(Meet between the Zen Garden
and the playground)

Nearest Bus Stops: #2224 or #2531

 

This is a place for those who may not engage with a classic spiritual tradition, but who nevertheless have a desire to discuss their questions or conclusions about their spiritual life with others who share their interest in actively developing their own psychological and spiritual health.

We have no agenda, although I am open to questions. This is simply time in nature, spent with others who also share an interest in quelling their busy minds in order to engage more profoundly with our daily realities.

peace. s

 

#YEG Secular Sundays Announced

1322 Relax and Succeed - In every walk with nature

I had previously noted that my schedule in caring for my parents leaves me with too little time to engage in nature with like-minded souls. In order to resolve this and simultaneously do something worthwhile in the world, I am experimenting with Secular Sundays, a way for the non-religious to still have a gathering for spiritual purposes, in the greatest temple ever created: nature.

Barring emergencies, the #YEG Secular Sunday Walks will commence in Edmonton, AB at 11am on Sunday July 7th. If you would like to know which path we’re walking any given week, please just drop me a note at scottis@relaxandsucceed.com.

Depending on how many of us there are, I may begin the walk with a brief talk. After that, people are welcome to walk with me to ask questions, and there may in fact be former students who’ve lived this way for some time who also can likely answer some questions. At the very least, everyone will be people who love the subject matter.

If you’re looking to grow spiritually, and if you want to get out, get some exercise but not be strained, and if you would like the company of others that have similar values regarding cooperation, compassion, empathy, respect and love, then this might be just the walking group for you.

peace, s

True Action

1264 Relax and Succeed - The best place to findSome people approach the act of learning to manage their consciousness with fears that it is too difficult for them to do (it isn’t), or they may have have fears that without thoughts about religion or guilt that humans are destined to descend into chaos, but these are very weak and bleak views of ourselves and of humanity, unsupported by history and daily experience.

Certainly humans get a lot wrong, but for better or worse we managed to go from just another ape to being the dominant species on the world with 7.5 eventually to be 11 billion people. Clearly we cared enough to about people to do that, and now that we’re starting to get slightly competent with that we have switched our attention to the other living things that comprise our environment.

Despite our many mistakes, humanity also offers daily examples of compassionate, heroic responses to need, from cleaning oil-slicked seagulls, to entertaining the elderly, to inventing a simple, yet life-saving, medical technology. These aren’t the sort of stories that fill the news and sell lots of security systems or insurance, but they happen every day nevertheless.

1264 Relax and Succeed - The truth is everybody is going to hurt youThat connection to the others around us that leads to heroism is where we’re at when we’re healthiest. But we can’t be in that state if we’re slicing up the world and the people in it into labels, and then sorting them by how we value them at that time. That is one valid representation of the world, but it’s not the only one, but our judgment process delays our action and takes it out of the realm of in-the-moment callings and makes it a thought-based decision.

A hunting animal doesn’t make a decision. It skips straight from awareness to action in a constant whirling flow like a spinning Yin and Yang. A gazelle does no pro and con list as it tries to evade a cheetah. At that point it is so involved in appreciating its own life that it surrenders thought and the animal trusts the secret forces inside itself that are telling it which way to go and when. After that it’s simply chess between it and the cheetah doing the exact same instinctual in-the-moment thing.

We feel impulses. There is a consistency to them. If we’re looking for our calling we should look for what naturally matters. You might be the biggest toughest guy on the block, but if every time you see a special needs kids you go soft and react the instant you see an unmet need, then maybe despite all that tough exterior, you’re a caregiver.

1264 Relax and Succeed - You can sufferEgos will feel guilt about not being home for the kids, or about not wanting to be home for the kids. But trusting ourselves means that we do whichever one we feel is necessary for our fulfilment and we accept the consequences of that choice. Modelling being oneself is also important to children. Freedom isn’t freedom from pain or consequences, it simply allows us to make the kinds of sacrifices we find it more natural to make, despite how significant  or unwise they may appear to others.

Let’s take today and pay attention to our reactions to the world. Where are our impulses and what do they have in common? We’re not looking for the cloying needs of our egos, we’re talking about actions where we can’t recall having decisions attached to them. These are times where we’ve acted as our true selves in an actual present moment.

These moments of reality pepper our days. As uncomfortable as our calling might feel to our ego, we need to ask ourselves what those moments say about who we fundamentally are and therefore where we might find the heart of our calling. Asking that through observation is important because, after all, no one knows the answer to that better than we do.

peace. s

Scott McPherson is an Edmonton-based writer, public speaker, and mindfulness facilitator who works with individuals, companies and non-profit organizations locally and around the world.