Follow your Dreams

“…when you want something, all the universe conspires to help you to achieve it.”  The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

My favorite book turns 25 this year. It’s the best story about following your dreams and trusting your intuition I’ve read, and one I return to for inspiration time and time again.

The Alchemist confirmed my experience and fed my hopes when it turned up in my hand over 20 years ago. It’s a simple story but relates many profound spiritual truths.   If you read only the first 30 pages and really get it, I swear it will shift the way you think and perhaps the direction of your life.

The universe is expressing through us all the time, and wants to take us in the direction of our best interests, our talents, and our gifts.  It is only when we fight what we know deep down to be true, when a “mysterious force” begins to talk us out of our dreams, that life becomes difficult. It is never easy to swim against the current.

Life starts not working out, plans fail, health leaves us – but it is all part of the grander plan to bring us back to where we need to be. The trick is to be open and watch for the signs.  That’s when intuition leads the way.  The universe is always speaking to us.  Listen.

What books changed your life?  Please share some titles and your experience!

Lost and Found

This place teemed with life like no place I’ve been. Every step put me in danger of hurting something – black and golden grasshoppers by the dozens leapt out of the way, half inch red ants commuted in waves across the dirt trail, butterflies flitted, birds swooped, caterpillars wriggled over branches and up tall grass, salamanders darted underfoot,  startling me as I walked. Birdsong rang out from every direction from one of hundreds of species that migrate through here for the winter.  Soon the Sacaton grass was over my head and I lost the trail, overgrown in a few weeks from the heavy rains of late. I stood still and afraid for a moment because I could not see my way.  But there is a path if you’re willing to dive in and move forward; there are guideposts if you look closely.  I felt small in this resplendent place, unimportant. What is important came into focus. With every bug bite, scratch, and stab of burrs clinging to my pants, I laughed. It felt good to be alive.

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Natural Intuition

To boost your intuition get out in nature. Pay attention to what shows up. It’s the first step in remembering more about who you are, and connecting to the energy that permeates all life. Our lifestyle isolates us from our intuitive understanding of the world, and ourselves. Closed off in our homes and office buildings, our physical prowess and connection to the rhythms of nature have all but disappeared. We let a stranger on TV tell us what is coming from the skies above, rather than watching for ourselves. Too often this is true for the weather of our lives as well.

There is power in connecting to the natural world and the cycles that rule it. As the season shifts with the recent Summer Solstice, energy expands and nature sheds what is no longer useful – like the snake that sheds it skin to reveal something new. What patterns or habits do you need to shed now? What in your life no longer serves you? Let it go. Then plant new thoughts, ideas, and intentions in the energy of today’s New Moon. Stand outside in the dark night and think about what you really want. Let the seeds of your dreams take root and consciously move toward wholeness with the moon over the next two weeks.

Conscious Parenting

Each of us is born with the same purpose: to become aware of ourselves as Spirit and to manifest our greatest good in the world as individuals.  As parents, it is easy to lose sight of our children’s inner drive to become truly themselves as we try to teach them and keep them safe. Our expectations of who our children will become overshadow their own truth.

Conscious parenting requires seeing  children for who they are – strong and capable Spirits  – whether they are an infant in a crib or an inexperienced teenager.  It means supporting them in what brings them joy and what they do well, even if it doesn’t suit our dreams for them. Teaching your child to connect to their inner wisdom (intuition) to guide them through life is one of the greatest tools for  happiness that you can give them.

Kahlil Gibran’s words are a beautiful reminder:

On Children

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.