By Tanis Helliwell
A prayer we can say every day as we do our work…
“God these are your hands. Now don’t you go and embarrass yourself.”
Three paths to consciousness:
1) The path of the contemplative
There are basically three ways to live a spiritual life. One is to retire from the world into the cloisters and caves and there to meditate, chant, pray and engage in actions that hopefully lead to consciousness and enlightenment. This is the path common to nuns, priests, monks and yogis of all different traditions and it was perhaps more popular in the past. Increasingly we see nuns working as teachers and Tibetan monks doing the speaking circuit. Still the contemplative path remains a viable one for some people either for their entire life or for part of it.
2) Supporting Others Who Do Soul Work
The second path to enlightenment is to support communities and individuals who are doing work that benefits peoples’ soul. This path is not new. In the middle ages there were oblates who had responsibilities in the world and who affiliated themselves with monks and religious orders. These oblates expected the monks to pray for them and the oblates in return gave part of their sustenance to the monks. A similar form of practice exists in India and South-East Asia where every morning monks go out with their bowl into the community and the people put food into the bowl. In the western world the practice of tithing 10% of our income to churches or charities is a way that we can engage in this second path.
3) Meditation in Action
The third way of practicing a spiritual life is to attempt to bring more love to our work and to do this every day and in every way. This is the path of the heart and the central path available to most of us whereby we integrate our spiritual practice into every day life and practice meditation in action.
I witnessed an excellent example of this last week as I was eating brunch at one of my favourite eating establishments. The café is owned by a husband and wife team and Barbara is a master at heartfelt service. She welcomes everyone who comes to the café and makes an effort to get to know them. As she says, “For us it’s easy because we like every one who comes here.”
Her clients are varied and the day I’m referring to a man sat at a neighbouring table who comes regularly from Seattle and according to Barbara always orders the same thing—a vindaloo omelet. The two women at the table to my right were in the film industry and Barbara knew all about what they did and had them eagerly chatting about their current successes and failures. As a result of her welcoming, homey attitude Barbara has 95% repeat clients and 80% of her customers eat there at least once every two weeks.
Love, Compassion and Appreciation: Keys to Well -Being
Recent studies by the Institute of HeartMath have shown that the three things that move our heart into a harmonious coherent pattern that promotes health and well-being are love, compassion and appreciation. The more often and longer that we appreciate others and feel appreciated by others the greater the coherence in our heart that promotes a calm, relaxed state that is alert and produces effective task performance. Because of the rhythmic pattern and incredibly strong electromagnetic field of the heart, when it goes into coherence it entrains our other body systems to enter coherence with it. In addition, studies indicate that the heart, like the brain is a global energy system that encodes and distributes information holographically.
Sometimes in our world we do not take the time to get to know people and to appreciate them and show interest in their lives. This is something all of us deeply seek and it feeds our heart and soul and actually creates more peace and love in the world. It’s nice to be reminded of the importance of love and appreciation by role models like Barbara.
Tanis Helliwell, a mystic in the modern world, has brought spiritual consciousness into the mainstream for over 30 years. Since childhood, she has seen and heard elementals, angels, and master teachers in higher dimensions. Tanis is the founder of the International Institute for Transformation (IIT), which offers programs to assist individuals to become conscious creators to work with the spiritual laws that govern our world.
Tanis is the author of The High Beings of Hawaii, Summer with the Leprechauns, Pilgrimage with the Leprechauns, Embraced by Love, Manifest Your Soul’s Purpose, Hybrids: So You Think You Are Human and Decoding Your Destiny.
For information on Tanis’ courses, click here.