Years ago, when I was in seminary, one of my professors Rev. Dr. Gail Ricciuti, challenged me to think about God as an artist. I fell in love with that idea, partly because it reminded me of one of my favorite children’s books by Martha Hickman called And God Created Squash. She tells the Creation story with a God who has an awesome sense of adventure, play and creativity talking to himself in the Garden of Eden about all that he wants to create. He envisions things and creates them by calling them into being. One inspiration leads to another. For example, God falls in love with the word squash. "I like that name . . . I think I'll use it again. Acorn squash. Butternut squash. Even zucchini squash. I might have a game and call it squash. Or put my hand on something and press down hard and call that squash." This creative process continues until God ends by fashioning some company for himself--something, "well, more like me."
This whole idea of God as an artist was the inspiration for one of my first sermons, called Divine by Design. Here I argued we are Divine by Design because we were designed by the Divine. If we had a label that we wore, some sort of trademark, it would say Divine Design. Read More
don Miguel Ruiz once said, "You know the word 'Toltec' means artist. When I talk about Toltec, I’m really talking about the entire humanity, because we all are artists. Even if we don’t have the awareness, we’re always creating. The biggest art that we humans create is a story – the story of ourselves, the story of our life. It looks so real, and we live in that story... We give a meaning to every single word that we use. We give our personal power to knowledge... and knowledge creates a massive piece also, which is the main character of our story. Which means it creates us, what believe we are..." Read More
Last week, I talked about how the simple act of breathing can put the emotional brakes on our shenpa. Dr. Andrew Weil, a physician specializing in integrative medicine, said the “The single most effective relaxation technique I know is conscious regulation of breath.” Breathing is not just a sign that we are still alive and functioning. Breathing is a spiritual act, which bridges the mind and the body. If you pay close attention to your breathing, you will notice that there is this gap between your inhale and your exhale. This gap is said to be the movement of spirit within and through us. In many early languages, the words for spirit and breath are the same. Thus, breathing is not just necessary for our health and wellness, but it is the process through which we stay connected to the Creator.
Remembering to breathe allows us to relax, align our responses to anything out of love, and not fear. When we learn how to breathe, just breathe, we can begin to improve our physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. When we work at being conscious of our breathing, we can begin to take advantage of the blessings and gifts that come with the simple act of breathing. Just breathe. Read More