Monday, August 1, 2011

Ramadan and what it means to YOU...

I have always enjoyed learning about other religions and their traditions... If it speaks to me, I  incorporate what I learn into my own practice in one form or another.  And if nothing else, I learn about my brother's and sisters from around the world which assists me in having more understanding and compassion for others. 

Ramadan starts this evening and as I understand it, this is what it's all about:

During the month of Ramadan, adult Muslims engage in ritual fasting from sunup to sundown. This practice, Sawm, is one of the five pillars of Islam, and requires that individuals abstain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex. Each evening, Muslims will break the fast at sundown with Iftar, a traditional meal often beginning with the eating of dates -- an homage to a practice of Muhammad.
In general, the practices of Ramadan are meant to purify oneself from thoughts and deeds which are counter to Islam. By removing material desires, one is able to focus fully on devotion and service to God. Many Muslims go beyond the physical ritual of fasting and attempt to purge themselves of impure thoughts and motivations -- anger, cursing, greed, etc. As part of this, service to the community and to those in need is a major emphasis of activity throughout the month.
Sounds like a great practice...reminds me of Lent, growing up Catholic...the month before Easter we were supposed to give something up...most people gave up sugar or deserts or swearing or some other 'bad' habit they had...i'm not even sure why we did that or what was the purpose...sacrifice, I guess...

Ramadan appears to be a little more meaningful...fasting as a  means to forget the materialism and physicality of food, sex, drinking etc and focus on devotion and service to God and their communities.  And the additional fast of purging ones self of anger, greed, cursing and impure thoughts...I would add self-limiting beliefs, negative self talk, gossip...this is a wonderful thing to do.
Just think, a holiday to purge oneself of impure thoughts and motivations...a time set aside to ponder how you can better yourself, practice devotion to your diety of choice and perform acts of kindness and service to those in your community less fortunate than yourself!!! Beautiful!!

 Why not join whatever way this speaks to you. Take your family to work in the soup kitchen...clean up your language...quit smoking or whatever bad habit you may engage in that is less than optimum for your body temple. Or think of something you could let go of if only for a day...junk food, gossiping, drinking, smoking, negative self talk...whatever it is...something will come to you...try it for a day...then another...then another...maybe for the entire month of Ramadan...who knows where you could be in a month or the good you could accomplish.

Just pick may not be Muslim, but they've got something good going here, why not participate. We are ALL ONE and in being ONE, I've found that it is beneficial to embrace the positive traditions of other cultures...and if we don't feel like adopting other practices we can at least learn about them to increase our awareness and compassion. I learned something new about Muslims and I now have another area of connection and relatability. This knowledge assists in erasing stereotypes, judgements and hatred that exists in the world. This wisdom assists us in being one step closer to ONENESS with our fellow humans.
So in honor of Ramadan...I'm going to do my own fast tomorrow...Happy Ramadan, ALL!!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

I Am Absolute Existance

Sunday: The Law Of Pure Potentiality: Om Bhavam Namah-I Am Absolute Existance.  
Pure potentiality is pure consciousness. It is the field of all possibilities and infinite creativity.  The best ways to access this place is through meditation, silence, being in nature and non-judgement.  Stillness is the first requirement for manifesting your desires.  That’s why meditation is so important.  When you meditate you access that still place...when you drop your intentions into THAT space it’s like dropping a small pebble into a still pond...the effects go out across the water permeating into your being and essence and also into that universal field...the Universe and your Higher Self go to work effortlessly manifesting the desires of your heart that you have placed there.

Why non-judgement?  Because when you are evaluating people, events and circumstances as good/bad, right/wrong, etc your mind is turbulent...when we are thinking this should not have happened or this person is x, y, z, our mind is all over the place and usually with negative thoughts about ourselves, others and situations.  Judgement creates chaos and a lack of peace and acceptance of what tell yourself in the morning, “Today, I will not judge anything that happens.” Whenever you find yourself judging, remind yourself of your commitment. Or you can play a little game that I play with myself...when I find myself judging another person or situation, I say to myself...”I am THAT I am...” i.e., that mother yelling at her child, that very overweight person, that person that just cut me off on the freeway...because we are ALL, all of it.  That  quickly stops my judgement dead in its tracks often followed by a big “aha” moment.
People of many faiths and practices are familiar with the sacred principle of fasting. When I was a young girl of about 16, I had the Bible quote, “Be still, and know that I am God.”, taped to my mirror. This was long before I learned to meditate or knew this law. I would like to suggest a noise-fast or a period of silence...turn off your tv’s, stereos and ipods, put down your books, magazines and studies and stop talking, texting, gossiping, singing and making noise and just be quiet. Just “BE”. Most people have a very hard time with this...this is where we meet our Selves...this is where we get acquainted with our essence, this is where we commune with God/Source/The Universe...this is a scary place for many...until it isn’t.  Until you begin to relish the day you will crave it...but for now, just try having a family meal in silence or a morning or an afternoon. When you get in your car don’t automatically  turn on the radio, talk on the phone, text or listen to any music or podcasts. .  Make the practice of silence a weekly occurrence ...or a daily one if you are more brave. Peace and calm will be a more frequent visitor in your life from this simple practice alone.
I can never speak enough about the absolutely positive benefits of being in’s why I love to travel so much.  To see the beauty, magnificence and abundance of this amazing planet instills awe, gratitude, appreciation and creativity to my Soul.  When you look around and see the beauty that surrounds us daily....when you see how effortless nature works and in perfect harmony, knowing that we are made of the same stuff, that we are as magnificent as the mountains, that we are as free as the can we ever have any anxiety, fear or scarcity?  If WE but tune in to that field of pure potentiality, like nature has, WE will effortlessly bloom, we will effortlessly and joyfully manifest our desires.  There is no lack in nature...abundance abounds...that stream of well-being is ALWAYS flowing to us...all there is for us to do is be still, be and allow.  The ideas and creativity will flow and you will be guided to take certain steps that will lead you to your bliss.  
Each of the seven spiritual laws are associated with one of the 7 chakras and the Law of Pure Potentiality is connected with the crown chakra.  Our 7th or crown chakra is that which connects us to the Divine or Divinity; it is our connection with pure consciousness.  There is no greater practice for developing the crown chakra than meditation. The words associated with this chakra are infinity, immortality, holiness and enlightenment.  These words easily describe this field and law opure is where these traits reside for they are Divine in nature.
Our truest and purest desires are simply the desires of the Universe, the gods and goddesses wishing to be expressed through each of us.  So that being the case, when we are STILL enough to figure out what those deep, pure, beautiful desires are...there is a great big field of pure consciousness, awareness and creativity that has infinite organizing powers that longs to assist us in the fulfilling of those dreams and desires.  We are loved.  We are One.  We are the World. We are perfect in our uniqueness and our collective sameness. So what are you waiting for? Get busy and BE STILL!!
* The ideas and concepts for this blog come from The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra...highly recommended by moi.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

On Bali, Trash & Tat Tvam Asi....

On Bali, Trash & Tat Tvam Asi....
I had the incredible opportunity to go to the breathtaking island of Bali recently. I went with a client on a “spiritual retreat” of sorts.  We practiced meditation and yoga everyday, along with one of the 7 Spiritual Laws of Success which could easily be entitled the 7 Laws of How the Universe Works. I was struck by the lush, green landscape of terraced rice fields, elaborate stone and wood carvings around every doorway, not to mention the plethora of sizable, magnificent Hindu Temples dotting the landscape. I was also taken by the humble, daily offerings of rice, flowers, fresh fruit, incense and chanting that takes place in the majority of households, villages, temples, places of interest and businesses of every kind.

 While we were in Bali, they were celebrating the metal gods or giving thanks to the gods for the past it would have been for their knives and swords but keeping it current...they now bless their cars and scooters in lieu of the knives.  The Balinese people all over the island were making offerings, decorating their cars and bikes and the village priests were blessing the cars with holy water and incense.  Kind of like car insurance, I thought to myself.  After all, the blessings of several Hindu gods/goddesses may be even better than Geico, ...and I’m sure they beat everyones prices...just sayin...

So what i am attempting to convey here is that the Balinese people are a beautiful, devoted, sacred, god/goddess loving, believing, faithful culture.  They are happy, friendly, smile authentically, are present and beautiful. They take off their shoes before they enter a holy place or even a neighbors house. It is required of everyone, tourist or local that they be wearing a sarong to enter their Temples as a means of respect to the gods. 

I loved, respected and admired their conscious, peaceful, observant and sacred ways.  However, there was this one thing that I just couldn’t make sense of that I started to judge and criticize.  In this beautiful land...there is trash EVERYWHERE. “How can they be so reverent with all these beautiful and lovely offerings and then a couple days later their offerings become accumulated trash all over the streets?  Why don’t they pick it up?  Here they are working to honor the gods by their sacrifice and yet they don’t think that their trash is an affront to their gods??  Why don’t they see that?”, I judged. 

I started to joke, if I were King for a day in Bali, I would start a clean-up campaign. I would take everyone on a field-trip to Singapore, where I had just come from, and show them what a clean city looks like! Singapore is sooo clean you could almost eat off the subway floor...forget that they are threatened with caning if caught littering and their communist ways...the place is scarily CLEAN. I went on...I would have everyone cleaning their little areas, invest in many trash trucks, create an island dump, put trash cans out in all public areas and establish a recycling campaign to boot. I spoke of this for days...and then it hit me...

I played a game with myself that I play with my clients called, “I am that I am...” So I  asked myself, “How am I that I am that I am judging? How am I like this beautiful island that has all this trash?” Ooohhh...the answers came quickly.  I am beautiful in that I do a good job in honoring my temple (my body & mind)...I meditate, do yoga, eat the healthiest of foods, have healthy relationships, get regular massages, detox when needed, read up-lifting material and make very nourishing choices...that is...except for this one thing.... (well, the one thing that was glaringly obvious to me, anyway...not to say that there aren’t others)...I dishonor mySelf by going to bed late most nights. I dishonor mySelf by not getting the sleep my body would prefer. Which leads to dishonoring mySelf in other ways and not accomplishing the things on my heart because I’m not up early enough to work on them or I’m too tired. 

Yes...that’s how I am like that which I was judging. Now instead of beating mySelf up or the Balinese people I worked on compassion and understanding.  I found out they do not have any form of trash removal in the small villages. In heavy rains, the people that live at lower levels have all of the trash from the people that live above them flow right into their yards.  Clean-up for them feels futile when their neighbors are not enrolled. Since I’m not King of Bali...the best I could do at that time, was to make sure I didn’t contribute to the trash level...and look inward towards my own “trash” and vow to do better. 

 The next week I was in bed before 10pm every night :)...last night I was up til 3am.  We all have our own ‘trash’ to tend to...and like an old Bible quote states, “...don’t worry about the speck in your brothers eye when there is a timber in your own.”  So the next time you find yourself judging someone that is overwieght or yelling at their kids in the grocery store, stop and ask yourSelf...How am I THAT I am?  You may not be “overweight” but you may be over-indulgent in other may not have kids or even yell at your kids, but maybe you yell at your employees or have harsh words with your spouse.  There is ALWAYS something to see about ourSelves in our judgements and finger-pointing. Be willing to embrace the entirety of you. Acknowledge your darkness. Only in shining the light on it, will you be able to heal it and transmute it.

On the flip, shiney side, we only see the magnificence and beauty in others because it exists to one degree or another within ourSelves. Everything is a mirror for us.  One of my favorite Sanskrit Sutras is Tat Tvam Asi.  It means, I see the other in mySelf and mySelf in others. Everyone and everything are simply different versions of ourSelves. You and I are the same. I am that, you are that, all this is that. I am the beauty of Bali and the the litter and debris...all in the same time. We are not flawed because we have less than perfect traits...we are human.

I am that I am and Tat Tvam Asi are tools for our own spiritual evolution.  The ultimate goal is unity consciousness. The most enlightened people in the world embrace the fullness of their own light and dark. When we learn to let go of judgement, love ourSelves and see that we truly are all one...we not only raise our own vibration and personal awareness but the vibration and consciousness of the entire planet as well. Tat Tvam Asi...I see YOU.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Memoirs from the Winged Life...

It was another magical day in Mexico...I headed out for my daily sojourn to the’s deserted, the beach club is closed. I ask what’s going on, they tell me the Tsunami is supposed to hit at was 1pm.  I headed to the beach, unfazed...the sea was a little raucous, tide coming in further than I had seen before.  I have the beach virtually to myself with the exception of a few on lookers from the road and adventurous stragglers like myself.
I consider my own mortality...what if...what if it really comes...what if today were my day...what would I do?  What would I regret not having done?  What would I do differently?  I ponder this not in a panicked way but in an eerily peaceful way as i slowly walk down the empty, sub-lime coast line.  
It’s day 10 of my master-cleanse...feeling good, a little weak...I decided if I saw the pastry man, I would use my pesos to buy something yummy...after-all, this could be my last hours.  He magically appears, as if the thought itself had summoned him from the ethers. Instead of my usual banana muffin, I decide to go all out...10 days without food is a long time...the vanilla creme-filled donut calls to me.  “I’ll take one of those, porfavor...” I savor each morsel asIi continue my walk along the coast...wishing I had chosen the muffin...turns out, I prefer it...who knew...
It’s 1:30, I decide to play in the water...I’m doing my usual hands up pose, taking it all one was there for the photo-shoot, unfortunately.  I am blissful, perhaps a tad apprehensive...however, I throw my arms up and send all the love, peace and harmony my soul can muster out with the tide for the blessed people of Japan.  I feel safe...this is Laurie Frazier mountain, ever steadfast is watching over me, Mr. Sun is shining down upon me.  All is well in my world.  I come out of the water...I decide I will seek higher ground and watch the show.  I turn around, away from the sea and directly behind me, high up on the hillside is a completely random, green lounge chair...I said, “Thank-you, Universe.”, climbed up and took a front row, solitary seat.
I look at my phone, I had received a text from my friend in Japan...he is safe, but stranded.  Again, I thank the Universe as I contemplate the fragility and impermanence of life itself...still thinking about what I would do differently if my time were indeed limited (which it is).
I curl up in the green lounge chair as I watch the sea roll and roar...what a wonder and beauty to behold.  Simultaneously, the images of devastation curse through my brain as just a few hours earlier on the other side of the planet, this beautiful earth and sea was wreaking havoc, taking lives and leaving a wake of destruction.  I thought about how we, as human beings can be that way...sometimes we are kind and sweet and loving other times we are hateful, contentious and at war.  I make a conscious vow to choose peace, to choose love over being right, to LIVE everyday of my appreciate and find the silver lining in shower the people I love with keep smiling at strangers, to lead with my heart, to silently bless everyone that crosses my path and to continue my great love affair with the Universe, my Beloved. 
 An hour goes by...I come back down to the shore and begin the trek back...a few more peeps have come out...the apparent danger appears to have passed this little shore-line  though still quite deserted.  I pass another pastry man carrying his basket on his shoulder. I use my other peso for a banana muffin...much better....I smile on the inside.
I stop at the beach club, pull up a lounge chair and drift off in the sun...again, I am the only one there.  After an hour I put on my running shoes and start the walk home.  
At the end of the beach there are tables and chairs...I am often greeted by Mexicans, however when they waved me over, I stopped. They asked if they could take my picture. As they lifted the camera, I lifted my arms in my signature pose...the crowd cheered at the sight. 
At this table was a group of Mexican and Brazilian men in their 60’s...jovial and harmless.  They poured me a brandy tequila and coke and offered me a chair.  The Brazilian asks me in Spanish if I am French...I answered him in my best French, “Mais, oui, Monsieur, je suis Francais.”  He doesn’t understand me, but gets that he is right.  They all start speaking to me...I tell them, “no ablo espanol”...they flag over a translator...yet another pastry man...through him they ask me to come dancing tonight...”my husband wouldn’t approve”...falls out of my mouth.  “Where did that come from?”, I think to myself...and who the heck is my husband? They ask to take more pics with me, as if I am some celebrity and I’m off..they cheer as I walk away.
My next encounter was a horse of course...the strangest, most random events cross my path these days...I could fill a book from just my 6 weeks in Mexico alone.  So on my way to the beach at noon, I saw a horse tied to a tree just a ways back from the road...I said hello, but am often timid around such large creatures, preferring fairies and small birds.  After my expansive day of contemplation at the beach, I was no longer afraid. I was so over-flowing with love, I could fear nothing. The horse was still there...I gave him a big hug...he kissed my hand and loved me back.  We had a sweet little exchange...I told him how beautiful he was and he told me I was lovable..”.awww...thanks, horsie...nice to are you!!
When you are awake and living the winged-life, there is beauty and wonder all around. I see the Beloved in everything I love.  What is a “winged-life”? The winged life is embodied in the following quote by Thoreau, “ If the day and the night are such that you greet them with with joy, and life emits a fragrance like flowers and sweet-scented herbs, more elastic, more starry, more immortal--that is your success.” Thoreau reminds us in Walden, "Only that day dawns to which we are awake."  One must be fully awake to SEE and in the words of St. Exupery from the Little Prince, “And now here is my secret, a very simple secret; it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye.”  When we truly see the world from our heart, everything has meaning, the Universe is in constant communication with us, life becomes magical and the mundane sacred.  
In the midst of our chaotic world, may you choose to see with your hearts all the beauty that is ever present.