Beyond Quarantine: A Chance for Rebirth

Before 2020, most of us believed that pandemics were ancient history. Having read about the black plague, smallpox, and other illnesses as lessons learned, we assumed we’d most likely never have to face such doom and gloom again. After all, science is powerful!

Not so much.

Science, as we all know it today, is relatively new, and less than 150 years old. And until mRNA developments, the way we treated viruses was less than pretty. Thanks to the process developments over the last 15 years, our ability to eradicate viruses has improved. That said, it’s far from perfect. 

Prior to the late 1800s, folklore, mythology, herbology and intuitive healing practices were more popular than aspirin. Strangely, and much to the chagrin of many of today’s scientists, herbs are still popular, highly nutritious, and often incredibly effective against a myriad of health challenges. 

During the 2020-21 quarantines, people realized the virus didn’t just affect their physical health, but every aspect of their lives. Things we used to take for granted, like hugging loved ones, social gatherings with friends, and collaborative meetings at work were limited, indefinitely postponed, or canceled.

As we contemplate the aspects of our lives, and coordinate all the changes we’ve had to make, many of us are wondering, “Is Covid-19 coming to a close? Are we done with this crap?! Can I finally just frickin’ go to Starbucks and drink lattes?!” *

As we prepare to emerge from our homes, stepping out of our lonely, secluded bubbles, and back into the bright, warm, light of the world, most of us understand that this is not just a hiccup. Truly, for all of us, life has changed forever. 

(*) Um. Well, yeah, I guess. But, it’s complicated. And it’ll be dangerous for quite some time, largely because, ya know, science and well, the idiots who find the realities of health science to be inconvenient. 

“I luv my dang intense phone and highly engineery diesel injun and all thuh other conveniences that cum outa smart people’s heads, but this dang science bill gates bullsh*t ain’t for me. I seen thru the onion! I been down the rabbit’s hole – and without protection! Jesus told me to blow at the virus soze it goes outs the window, which I did and I saw it went! All this masky fear is a big guvverment scam to make us cancel tractor-pulls, mate with farm animals, and eat our own livers! LONG LIVE JFK JR, MY CUTIE Q FOREVER!”

— Bucky Buferd, Anti-Science, Pro-Qanon, Human-Hater

 

We’ve All Grown Up Over The Last Year

It’s been a little intense at times, right? Many of us have struggled to thrive. With isolation from friends, family, coworkers, and adventures, little dips can turn into mopey-dopey rests, or multi-month depressions. It takes a ton of discipline to remain positive during times like these.

While many of us may have adopted a variety of wonderfully healthy new habits. To you, I say, “AWESOME! GREAT JOB!” For the rest of you, there’s probably a slew of things you’ve been doing that aren’t necessarily helping you improve your vibrations, uplifting your state of mind, or, shall we say, advancing our species to new heights.

At first, the sudden changes in our schedules felt exciting. For a moment, some of us were looking forward to slowing down, connecting with family, and growing a tomato. But over time, on some days, we probably found it difficult to get out of bed in the morning. Heck even hitting snooze can feel like a monumental task. 

The best of us treated this period of time like we were at war or as if we just repelled into a 1930s kibbutz or commune. You may have begun making jams, breads, jarred vegetables, and fermented, probiotic cranberry spritzers. You may have grown sprouts, built new shelves, or had sex with your equally bored neighbor. You may even have adopted new hobbies, like painting on grains of rice or windsurfing in your mind. 

Hey, whatever it takes, right?! It’s all about staying positive and finding ways to invite enjoyment and normalcy back in our lives!

Some of us have taken this opportunity to learn new instruments, pick up gardening, or even start their own businesses. Don’t be surprised after visiting with a friend or family member and find they’ve changed religions, converted their spare bedrooms into shipping centers, and built panic caves under their compost bins.

Though some people have dramatically changed their lives during their isolation, some struggle to adapt to life while living alone. If that sounds like you, you might be counting the days until you can embrace a loved one, go naked-hottubing with your pals, and socialize like it was 2019. 

The growth we’ve experienced during this is not limited to hobbies, habits, and bad cooking. One study shows that 22% of us have reported gaining weight in 2020, some now struggle with alcoholism, and many more show symptoms of deeper depressions. This difficult time has caused many to reevaluate their social circles, work ethics, and priorities. 

On the positive side, 2020 found many of us adopting pets, finally meeting our neighbors after 10 years, and spending 10X more time with household and family members, even the ones we don’t like!

The Challenges Of Getting Back to Normal 

Here’s the thing: it’s incredibly unsafe to pretend that life is now “getting back to normal.” During any pandemic, and especially during a pandemic involving a mutating virus, we can’t make any assumptions about timeframes as related to normalcy. 

When you take your first steps out of quarantine, wear a mask, socially distance yourself from others, and stay out of rooms and buildings that do not have open windows. 99.999999999999999% of ventilation systems do not defend against viruses. 

As you ponder your next move, consider some of these ideas:

 

Forgive Yourself For Mistakes

During this timeframe, you may have consumed more junk food and alcohol than the average 18 yr old on their first spring break. 

It might be that you purchased so much toilet paper, you’ve launched a new business making paper-mache angels for new-age bookstores. 

You may have cheated on your wife or husband by jerking off the postman. While your mail now comes a day early, it’s quite possible that breaking this and other rules didn’t make you feel too good.  

Meanwhile, all the people you love might also have made a few of these mistakes. In times of war and pandemics, it’s always best to get to forgiveness as quickly as possible. With emotions heightened and with more people feeling confused and depressed, it’s vital that you give every human being the benefit of the doubt. 

This is a great time to forgive yourself and others. 

 

A Time to Build Relationships

Keep in mind that many people throughout the world have been cooped-up just like you – for the same amount of time – or even longer. This means that almost any person you reach out to is desperate for social interactions. They might even cry when you say hello.

As you explore new relationships (and revitalize the old ones), ask them about their lives, take time to listen to their struggles, and let them know that they are loved.

This is a great time to practice sharing your compassion for all living Beings. While it may have been scary to make yourself vulnerable in the past, people will be more receptive to vulnerability, especially now that they have felt cut-off from the rest of the world.

Many people lost their jobs, some have gone through a divorce, and yet others are under an almost insurmountable amount of stress. There might even be people you know who are even facing the possibility of losing everything. 

If you see somebody suffering, do what you can to help them. Something as simple as a smile or hug can go a long way. 

Remember, too, that a smile shared is equal to meditation. It can dissolve pieces of your karma and bring you closer to the Divine. 

Set Realistic Goals

To set yourself up for success, be careful how you fill your schedule. 

     1 – Don’t take on every project and idea that trips across your desk. 

     2 – Take a measured approach. Don’t rush. 

     3 – Upon every decision, be certain before moving forward. 

     4 – Relax your demands and expectations. 

     5 – Allow yourself to upgrade your priorities. 

It might take you some time to start feeling “normal” again. You might also consider that there is no more normal. The past is gone. It is a canceled check. Expect a new reality. 

For some, quarantine is not very challenging.  You might LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE working from home and spending more time with your family. You may have also taken so much pause in your life that you’ve fallen back in love with your spouse or partner. You might even now really LIKE your kids! 

If you’re ready to get back in the game, or create a new game, make a list of a small handful of daily and weekly goals. Get a schedule going. 

Continue working out at home, but maybe try an outdoor class now and again. 

Start moving your alarm clock back 30 minutes at a time until you start waking up at your desired time. You might consider 15 minute of meditation in the early morning, a light breakfast, and then 30 minutes of praying, forgiving yourself and others, and forming a life-plan.

Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

When we come to life or step out of hiding, it can be easy to see someone else’s successes and feel like we’re not accomplishing very much. In these cases, we forget how long other people have been working on something. We might not know how many failures they had along the way. 

Be careful not to make too many assumptions. And never place yourself hierarchically beneath another person. 

THERE IS NO HIERARCHY! THERE IS ONLY PROJECTION!

Projecting less means less fantasy, fewer disappointments, and more reality. More reality means a more grounded, actionable life. 

YOU GOT THIS!

Be careful on social media. Relax before responding to someone. It’s important to remember that social media is only a glimpse into someone’s life, and usually only shows the best parts. Every person you respond to on Facebook, Instagram, and other places, is struggling in ways you might not be able to see, know, or understand. 

Instead of comparing your successes to those of your friends and associates, focus on your own goals and how to gradually work towards them. 

You are a capable individual and beautiful in your own right!

Remember What You Learned In 2020

Let’s face it. You were a rockstar. You rose above the sadness. You gave good thought to your goals. You shifted your habits a bit. And you made some solid headway. You broke through a few walls, you forgave a few people, including yourself, and you made some wonderful things happen. 

YOU did this. YOU! GREAT JOB!

Remember all of the coping skills you developed in 2020. Take time to look inwardly and reflect on who you’ve become. If you’ve started to practice meditation or yoga, GOOD ON YA, MATE! Please continue working on these things to clear your chakras and energy centers, and expand your awareness and self-love.

Create a doable schedule for all these things, commit to it, and you’ll expand your life!

Try Something New

Instead of heading out and picking-up where you left off a year ago, tell yourself: IT’S TIME TO BEGIN AGAIN. It’s time for a REBIRTH!  

A few ideas!

     1 –  If you have a cat, dog, goldfish, or pet rock, I’ll bet you’ll find a MeetUp group that’ll tickle your fancy and heart – and make you feel all warm-fuzzy inside!

     2 – Start guided meditation or yoga class! Online to start – and when it’s safest, you can join a few in-person classes – but only in highly ventilated rooms and buildings. 

     3 – Examine your job and profession. Are you in the right position or field? Can you grow here? Do you have some other ideas? If so, get to it! 

     4 – After spending so much time away from everyone else, it can feel daunting to get back out there and immerse yourself with others. Think about how a butterfly emerges from a cocoon after spending a long time developing herself. During this time, you’ve grown in more ways than you know. It’s not time to be fearful, but time to spread your own wings and share the new you with all those you meet.

 

Rituals & Prayers

Find time for rituals and prayers, which you can find on my website under Free Resources. Dive deeply into your nature and learn who you truly are. Expand your heart by forgiving everything, including each of your mistakes. 

 

With daily prayer, meditation, and rituals, we can establish protective spheres around us and create pathways for light to move into our hearts, minds, and lives. 

 

Once in a while, find time to serve others and pray for others. This invites The Universe and all the divine Beings to nourish and support you.

 

Remember how powerful and wonderful you are. 

 

Love yourself, always.  

 

MAY ALL THE BEINGS, IN ALL THE WORLDS, THROUGHOUT ALL THE REALMS, BE HAPPY!

Can Mindfulness Dismantle Our Truthfulness, Positivity, And Flow?

Mindfulness

Mindfulness – The Trendy, Undisciplined Vacuum: A Shutterstock Licensed Image

We are born as electric, wild creatures, infused with limitlessness, and empowered by the infinite array of energies found in every galaxy throughout the universe. There are subtle-bodied energies, planetary and other-realm influences, magnetic pulls, angelic blessings, and the biochemical reactions that result from living in a vast, 3-dimensional, physical reality.

We are powerful, to say the least…

Mindfulness is a concept that has been steadily injected into our social media feeds since the early 2010s. There are thousands of mindfulness teachers, corporate trainers, new-agey yoga folks, and beautiful monks seeking to enlighten the world with this simple modality. The concept goes something like this:

By being aware of our conscious Self, actions, and emotions, and focusing solely on the present moment, we can become calmly aware of our realities, bodily sensations, and natures, and objectively engage with our realities.

It all sounds wonderful, beautiful, and transformative. Who wouldn’t want to live in such a way? When embracing this ancient Buddhist tradition, what could possibly be harmful or restrictive to us? How, really, can mindfulness limit us?

The problem with mindfulness is that it’s been co-opted by the New Age movement. You remember this movement, right? It’s the often narcissistic, over-feminized, spiritual ideology that teaches people to objectify and worship themselves. Meanwhile, it rejects the idea that it takes work to improve ourselves.

The New Age is the same quasi-religion that promised a perfect balance out of one side of its mouth while exalting the spiritual ego out of the other. This mish-mash style of spiritual development sounds good, but sometimes it’s nothing but rainbow-colored quicksand.

The New Age as the Selfie of Spiritual Ideologies.

The way that mindfulness is often taught isn’t necessarily damaging, it’s just that it has limited value, and might not help us evolve. While it might keep us out of trouble for 10 minutes, mindfulness is missing a long list of steps and experiences. And it’s filled with presumption.

Today’s corporate mindfulness is nothing but a stolen final-phase, poorly extrapolated from meditating monks. It’s the most overused brick in the foundation of the faux-spiritual paradigms amidst today’s convenient spiritual truths. The way that mindfulness is currently portrayed, marketed, and taught is half-baked at best.

Every day we see trendy snippets from the world’s purest liberation practices flowing through our feeds. These snippets are comforting, but without context, they circumvent the pathways to liberation and enable our denial. To truly liberate, we must begin by acknowledging who we are. We must embrace our compositions and desires, not judge them. We have to start by practicing and perfecting the person we’ve become, so we can understand what and who we are seeking to abandon.

book-live-intuitive-reading-with-paul-wagner

We need to love ourselves, despite our mistakes. This requires that we explore and express our passions with abandon. If we don’t know our curiosities and desires, how can we move through them? How can we expand?

Many students of mindfulness have created a new personality to justify their goals and the money they paid for the mindfulness classes. They’re not investigating their uniqueness and power, they’re avoiding it, having relegated their true Self to a locked, labeled closet. They’re afraid to be themselves, so they picked a prettier “me.”

Unless you’re an avatar, you probably can’t extinguish your nature by avoiding it. It’s better that you celebrate it and love it to death.

After all, the ego is the I am, and without the ego, we are not.

While pursuing mindfulness, if we aren’t also honoring our emotions and shortcomings, we’re adopting temporary self-identities and fooling ourselves. To rebirth ourselves and embark on a path toward authenticity and liberation, we might not always be peaceful and mindful. Those pleasant ideas might be the antithesis to our evolution!

To take full advantage of this physical reality that we were born into, there are times when it’s vital to be wild, aggressive, hateful, and full of rage. How else can we know the spectrum of our humanity? And how else can we embody empathy with the hope of helping humanity transform?

Do you see the truth here?

  • If you cannot be authentic, you cannot know your limitations or expanded potential.
  • If you do not embrace who you are in this moment, you have no platform from which to evolve.
  • If you do not begin with accepting your desires and affections, you cannot know what is truly important to you.
  • This means that without letting it all flow, you cannot know your path to liberation.

Our true Self is the unrestricted one. In our exploration of our true Selves, we can become aware of our vasanas (problematic attributes and latent tendencies), and then consider releasing them. Heck, we can even enjoy them for a time. We might have moments where we feel a deep peacefulness, and we might begin to taste our true natures and Selves. But if we have not accepted and loved ourselves along the way, we will arrive at the precipice of liberation without having paid the price of admission. We will be forced to turn-around and begin again.

Wait, aren’t we all permitted to expand and enter the kingdoms of Heaven and expanded consciousness?

Yes. We all have tickets to the eternal realms and our most evolved Self, but most of us are obsessed with how we appear to others. Most of us are stuck in hierarchical paradigms that offer no promise of self-acceptance or liberation. The majority of souls living on this planet right now are obsessed with OPP – Other People’s Opinions.

In general, we don’t form our paths and personhood from self-exploration. We create ourselves by believing in religions, trends, misinformation, and self-limiting ideologies. Why? Because we all feel less-than, and we all feel guilty.

Rather than celebrate this complex universe and the gifts we’ve been given, we squash them with political correctness, over-analysis, and self-judgment. Rather than seek forgiveness and the healing of our guilt from within, or in partnership with the divine, electric universe, we ask forgiveness from our religious leaders, families, lovers, and friends. We might also demand it from strangers.

This type of projection-styled life results in two things: a long, repetitive journey – and a failure to achieve our objectives related to self-realization.

Can I choose to be who I truly am, right now?

Sadly, we cannot expand unless we relax into who we are at this moment. We have to forget about the “shoulds” that are over-sold to us by religions and new-ager ideologists, and instead, invest in fully accepting who we are right now. This includes allowing our anger, prejudices, desires, addictions, and bad habits.

To be mindful is lovely. But if we’re ignorant and resentful of who we are, our mindfulness will be based on a projection, illusion, and the false Self. This means it will be based on fantasies and result in experiences that only our false, temporary, contrived Selves will experience. This leaves us completely out of the picture.

In this case, our pursuit of mindfulness will result only in temporary, elusive, possibly damaging, alter-ego gratification – and nothing else.

Where do we go from here?

There’s a reason mindfulness has become so popular in corporate culture: everybody wants to be told that 10 minutes of meditation per day will enable them to change the world – and make money at the same time. It’s a scam.

There’s no simple formula for self-exploration. There are thousands of paths that could lead to expansion and liberation. While everybody is unique, and no path is absolute for all Beings, below are a few steps that might lead you to know and accept who you are right now.

These ideas might also help you break free from your limiting, temporary, and fantasy-based self-identities:

– Accept and love everything about yourself without limits. Remember that every aspect of you is a gift, and it provides a pathway toward a related but more evolved aspect.

– Encourage yourself to explore the people, activities, and beliefs that make you feel good, delicious, excited, and free.

– Enjoy actively participating and validating these aspects. If you love food, find ways to celebrate it. If you love punching people’s faces, take a boxing class. If you love sex, find sexual partners who might fulfill this desire-base.

– While having these experiences, allow yourself to deepen your appreciation for them. As you experience highs, relish them with every part of your Being.

– When you see holes in your beliefs, lows in your experiences, and unforeseen repercussions that make you nervous, consider how you might up-grade or release each of them.

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– As you experience projection-failures and relational breakdowns with the people and events that you once thought were valuable, make a note of what you learned from each one.

– Practice gratitude often.

– Consider what you’ve learned. Look within yourself to see how you have participated in these things. Seek to understand why you may have chosen them, why they were successful, and how they may have been less than adequate.

– Explore the possible reasons why you objectified and over- or under-validated yourself, others, and the events that unfolded.

– Allow yourself to feel and express the emotions that are related to your explorations, celebrations, and disappointments. Let it all out.

– Ask yourself why you chose these people, events, and passions in the first place. Answer honestly.

– Forgive everyone involved in each of your disappointments.

– Own the choices that led you to be involved with these people, events, and passions.

– Forgive yourself.

– Upgrade your beliefs and continue exploring what feels enjoyable, connective, and real.

Explore, experience, accept, forgive, emote, let go.

Throughout this process, you’ll evolve.

To improve your realities, both internal and external:

  • Embrace relationships, thoughts, intentions, rituals, and ideologies that are infused with liberating principals. Don’t skim off the top, devour the entire stew.
  • Seek love only from those who fully accept you for who you are, and what it means to love you.
  • Most importantly, be yourself. Be fully embodied and authentic in this lifetime.
  • Allow your desires to move through you, not solely for your pleasure, but also so you can learn to dissolve the false-Self and embrace your true, eternal Self. You can’t simply step into a new identity without first absolving the prior.

You are the embodiment of a trajectory that holds every answer you seek. There are no limits, other than those imposed by your oppressors and your loving heart.

Let it all out. Be authentic. Forgive everything. Allow the universe to accept, love, and perfect you.