This month I invite you to join me in looking deeply at the beauty and meaning of True Wealth. I invite you to try out some new views plus a practice that helps cultivate and sustain constructive new thoughts.
Most often, we look at wealth as being material; perhaps less often do we think of wealth as being spiritual. Sri Goswami Kriyananda emphasized the spiritual importance of establishing a solid financial foundation so that Seekers can more freely attend to the wealth of their spiritual practice.
LATE SUMMER 1955, RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, U.S.A
Dusk falls as fireflies twinkle. The adults lounge in the backyard, snacking on Planters Cocktail Peanuts, pastel party mints, shrimp cocktail, and deviled eggs. The many frosty glasses of Tom Collins, Gin & Tonics, Martinis, Old Fashioneds and Schlitz beer cans fail to quench thirst in the relentless humidity.
Children clamor for just one more Popsicle, just one more slice of watermelon, just one more handful of peanuts and party mints. They argue over who gets to be Captains for a game of Red Rover. A mother commissions her child: “Now, remember, you’re the oldest, so keep watch over this bunch, especially your little brother!” Nearly seven, the child has known that’s expected ever since the arrival of a sister just 13 months younger, followed by the Longed-for Son 3 years later.
Red Rover morphs into Hide and Seek as hysterical giggles and shrieks betray hiding places. It’s a great place for Hide and Seek—lots of shrubs, trees to climb, open back doors to enter. A call goes out: “Game over, everyone. Time to go home.” Sweaty children trudge slowly towards the dreaded combo of bath and bedtime.
Then furious shouting. “Where is your brother?! You were supposed to watch him! You know he’s a runner! Why can’t I ever count on you?” Not for the first time, adults stream outside to join the search for the 4-year-old boy reliably causing so much panic. He’s discovered finally, sound asleep in his parents’ bed.
That night solidifies the sad saga of the Girl Who Fails at Taking Care of Others. Corroborating evidence comes when she flounders, lost and overwhelmed as a mother at 19 and then again at 21. The growing legacy of this shame-filled self-story grows slimy barnacles of Guilt and Shame, sapping the joy out of motherhood.
Starting when she’s 30, she seeks all manner of help to heal this painful saga. Decades pass and still the habitual thought, “I failed at taking care of my sons” casts a pall over an otherwise happy life.
About to enter her seventh decade, determined to heal this ancient wound, she continues to meditate, asking to be released from the burden of these old despairing habitual thoughts. With the help of several wise people, finally an awakening. A healing arises in the form of a Brand New Thought:
SHAME BLOCKS LOVE.
In an instant, the painful burden of mother-shame and mother-guilt is lifted.
Many other Brand New Thoughts accompany this central thought:
What if, all along, there was nothing to be ashamed of?
What if, all along, Shame had been blocking her from receiving her sons’ love”
What if, all along, those ancient habitual thoughts had robbed her of mother-joy?
What if, all along, Shame had blocked her from self-acceptance and inner peace?
What if, now, 50+ years of suffering could cease?
What if, now, she could embrace these Brand New Thoughts and be free?
Time will tell. Enlightenment is not a superhighway. Meditation must continue. Self-compassion must continue. Releasing old habits must continue.
So what does this story have to do with True Wealth? EVERYTHING!
WHAT IS TRUE WEALTH?
Our Memory Track is our True Wealth. Our Memory Track contains all of this lifetime’s experiences, thoughts, words, and actions. Our Memory Track contains both constrictive and constructive karmic patterns formed in this lifetime and in our past lives.
The mystical tradition of Kriya Yoga teaches that thoughts are immortal. For example, Violence is an ancient thought-form. So is Ahimsa, Non-Violence. History witnessed what happened when Mohandas Gandhi committed to the ancient thought and practice of Ahimsa.
Humans are forever bumping up against a constrictive thought and without discernment, adopting it. Constrictive thoughts are erroneous thoughts that boil down to “I am Not Enough.” When the mind attaches to constrictive thoughts, it reinforces a perpetual cycle of constrictive words and actions. Suffering moves in, evicting clear thinking.
Every human being has the ability to release themselves from suffering. By seeking Brand New Constructive Thoughts, constrictive cycles like violence toward self and others can end.
A constructive new thought broadens one’s Horizon of Awareness.
A constructive new thought can lead to spiritual liberation.
A constructive new thought allows us a deeper understanding of our true nature.
Most stuff in the Memory Track gets there unconsciously. The mind is always busy doing something.
Why not do something of benefit? Start by mindfully observing and exploring the constrictive and constructive thoughts flowing into your awareness. Notice when your meditation yields the fruits of a new understanding. Set an intention to release old constrictive thoughts and to invite a new constructive thought to arise. Carry that intention into your daily life.
Brand New Constructive Thoughts cause Brand New Constructive Behavior. With continued meditation, self-compassion, and mental discipline, the 70 year-old mother has the possibility of an old age full of genuine freedom; brand new, more whole, healthy and peaceful ways of being.
TRUE WEALTH FUND IDEA
As the seven grandchildren grew, Harry and I wanted them to understand the concept that True Wealth is about seeking brand new constructive thoughts. We established the True Wealth Fund for each of them. Instead of buying a lot of expendable toys, each year we saved money for a gift that would fund an educational experience when they reached 18.
We’ve been delighted with how our grandson Andrew chose to use his True Wealth Fund, buying a good camera and computer as an investment in his career goal of being a professional photographer.
TIMING IS EVERYTHING
We are approaching the Mercury retrograde period, from November 16 to December 8, 2018. The ancients teach that it’s an auspicious time for spiritual reflection and study. What you learn during this time will make a deep impression in the Memory Track, influencing what happens going forward.
During the upcoming Mercury Retrograde period, set aside time to become still. Follow the breath, observing your thoughts.
Currently, what is the constrictive thought that causes me the greatest suffering?
Use your conscious mind and your intuition to examine this thought carefully and completely.
How long has this thought been stuck in the mind?
When and where and from whom did it originate?
Is it true? Says who?
Do your Shadow Work by making a SoulCollage® card to represent this constrictive thought. Be sure to have your Protector card nearby while you are working.
Both during and after the Mercury Retrograde time period, be sure to journal about what you are learning. These lessons will go with you into the future.
Track any new constructive thoughts that arise. What changes will naturally follow with these Brand New Thoughts?
If you wish to do a comprehensive inventory of various thought patterns, here is a worksheet.
Next month we’ll look deeply at the Beauty of Gratitude. Thank you for reading and sharing this essay, dear friends. May you be blessed with Brand New Constructive Thoughts. May you utilize them wisely!