Chapter Three: Defining Moments
Looking Beyond the Mirror of Life
Up and down the roller-coaster we go! One day up and one day we are down-we see suffering, we witness paradise. How we see the world is often a mirror image of what we see in our mirror. To see paradise in the world is to see divinity in the mirror of our soul. Look within and see without end in our outer world. Our self-reflecting thoughts become projected outward ideas.
To look into a mirror can be scary.
One will see the true self, aged and worn.
Look past what we see,
find the beauty others see.
Why do we see their beauty,
but fail to see our own?
See what I see-for I see a divine being who is loved.
Look into thy mirror,
see the magnificence.
Look into thy mirror, see the beautiful creation.
The person staring back, can either be a friend or fo-the choice is ours.
The person staring back
creates heaven on earth. Or the opposing, if that is what they choose.
See what I see…for I see a divine being who is loved.
Stepping into the Canvas of our reflection, seeing the Canvas of Life as we see fit. We can choose to see grief and sadness or happiness and exhilaration as our guide. While Pilgrim sees only the surface, Warrior sees deep within the soul.
Seeing deep within, she Loves deep without. Looking Beyond the Canvas of Life-we see a mirrored paradise-as within, so without.
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Many references state our biggest enemy lurks within our mirrors, sabotaging our true self from being loved. We gaze upon the mirror, judging relentlessly. The beauty remains-the same mirror holds our most incredible ally captive; we need only see her in the most original form.
We return to Ani Po, as she visits a Pilgrim, which we shall know as Tidak Sini. This next story came to me in a vision.
I entered a friend’s house, only to witness him covering all of the mirrors in his home. He was painting them, so he no longer had to look at the pain and suffering. Have you ever had a moment where you wanted to cover something up with hopes never to have to deal with it again? It is my own experience to embrace pain and suffering as a teaching tool, allowing us to learn from it, grow from it. In embracing suffering, we move beyond it, allowing new ideas to transform our present reality.
Instead of embracing pain and suffering as a guide to a more happy life, he covered the reflection of his past-never allowing pain a healing chance. We can dim or mask the pain, but eventually, it will surface. Imagine your troubles are swept under the rug or thrown downstairs into the basement. Yet, becoming too numerous in numbers, finally appearing again and again. A recurring theme of pain and suffering remains until face head on.
Shortly after this vision, I experienced it first hand as I witnessed a friend doing this very thing. Part allegory, part real-I hope the message is understood.
Note: Tidak Sini is Malay for ”Not Here.” Ani Po
is Hebrew for ”I am here.” While the Warrior shall be called Ani Po, it seems only fitting to name the Pilgrim Tidak Sini (not here).
As Ani Po entered Tidak’s home, she heard a whisper,” Be Open…Go Beyond.” At
the sound of the wind, She knew this visit was no mistake.
Ani Po: ”Hello friend! What are you doing?”
Tidak: ”Nothing, just covering up all the mirrors in my house.”
Ani Po: ”Why?”
Tidak: ”Because I am tired of seeing my face in the mirrors. I have done so many bad things in my life, and For that, I am ashamed. I judged people, called them nasty names, and deliberately harmed them.”
Ani Po: ”I am sorry
to hear this.” Reaching forward,
placing a hand on His
shoulder, as to say it was ok.”But you are human, and we all make mistakes.”
TIdak: ”But I cannot forgive myself for what I have done.”
Ani Po:” Would it make you feel better If I forgave you? Have you thought about going to your abused and asking for forgiveness?”
Tidak: ”No! I cannot.”
Ani Po: ”You could ask ’Great Spirit’ for forgiveness. Once we step into the Light of forgiveness, clemency presents, returning to the old ways, and the cycle continues. Removing paint-covered mirrors allows the true self to shine forth. Why not remove the paint, ask for forgiveness and learn to Love the enemy within self? See the enemy within as ally, and the enemy without shall become one too. What or how we see ourselves is how we see the other pilgrims around us. If we see only disgust within ourselves, chances are we witness the disgust all around us.”
Tidak: ”So, are you saying I should learn Love within to have Love without?”
Ani Po: ”Exactly what I am saying. Our inner beauty is exactly that and takes a bit of chiseling to uncover the many layers of paint we have applied to our mirrors. When I walked in today, I heard a whisper that said ‘Go Beyond.’ I think that message was for you, going beyond what you see…”
Ani Po knows all too well-we can cover the mirrors for a temporary fix, eventually looking deep within our souls, unlocking our true-self. Just as we hide our troubles into the basement, even if we lock the door, ultimately, we have to open that door-spilling all of our problems outward.
Stepping into the Canvas of our reflection, seeing the Canvas of Life as we see fit. We can choose to see grief and sadness or happiness and exhilaration as our guide. While Pilgrim sees only the surface, Warrior sees deep within the soul. Seeing deep within, she loves deep without.
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All We Need Is Love
With so many holidays set aside for self-reflection, we autonomously focus on what matters most-Love. Valentines’ day is a time to celebrate one’s Love often expressed to another. It is also the second-largest Hallmark moment next to Christmas, often accompanied by greeting cards, flowers, or even more extravagant gifts. I am not against these hallmark moments. I am in favor of them-keeping them reserved for every day, not just one or two days.
The origin of this festival had an entirely different meaning before the 5th century. The earliest recordings state that the February festival was a time of an ancient fertility festival dedicated to the Roman god of agriculture, Faunus, and the Roman founders Romulus and Remus. This festival eventually got banned by the Catholic church in the early 5th century.
Pope Gelasius declared it a day of celebration, honoring patron Saint Vincent. The irony here is that many would still consider honoring a person as a form of Idolatry stemming from Paganism. Just as the church deemed the fertility festival Paganism, they asked their followers to celebrate a Saint. In many eyes, both would be considered Idolatry.
Regardless of the detail, it does remain a festival of sharing Love…and there is no greater gift than sharing Love. However, should it be reserved for only one day? Can it be extended throughout the year? Can we adopt a belief system that shares Love and not hate? Can we all hear the sounds of John Lennon, as the Beatles sing-All we need is Love? Every day should be Valentine’s Day.
Today, I challenge you to share Love with all your encounters as if it were Valentine’s Day. Love does not have to be physical but merely a kind thought towards someone. Sharing Love with another can change the whole day, those closest to us, and furthest away if possible. This holiday is not reserved for anyone or any one day. It is meant to be shared by all-for all eternity. Love is the answer to all things.
Stepping into the Canvas with Love over-flowing. Sharing our Day in Love, we set a tone for a new beginning. A new beginning, filled with Love, Peace, and Happiness-not the lack of. Love is not reserved for some-but remains All-Inclusive. When we learn to love freely, we understand the meaning of Agape. Love unconditionally, and you shall know true freedom.
Darn near perfection-beautiful just the way you are.~Ani Po
Nobody is perfect, or are they? Is it our perception or judgment that declares an imperfection? Truly I say to you, we are all perfect in our ways, and we are beautiful as the next. Love thine enemies as thyself. Is this possible? Absolutely! To love, truly love another, we need first to love ourselves in all our imperfections.
Looking beyond the mirror of things, letting go of how we should be or something should be-we come to a place of acceptance. We are accepting others, accepting the self as imperfectly perfect as we are. I am not perfect, but I am-so are you!
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Spiritual Exercise: Defining Moments
1. This is the day your life will surely change
In taking our first step towards happiness, we lead by faith. Faith and hope that our footsteps will lead us unto greener pastures. It is not without difficulty or challenges faced with our thoughts or versions of our reality. It is time for a change and a faithful knowing it is right around the corner. Tell yourself, “I have taken the steps of a thousand miles, and now I begin a thousand more.” Meaning, by faith, we lead into the unknown and infinite possibilities.
2. Everything behind you
It is time to let go of any attachment, “we are to turn away from our own families.” Maybe not a literal translation but a symbolic one as such. Meaning we are to not worry about anyone person on this planet but ourselves. Focus on the healing of self, whether the level of mind, body, or spirit and the world around us will heal itself. Witness the varying differences and imperfections as entirely as intended, and Love will paint a new reality. This does not mean we cannot help another or show compassion towards another-it means we do not have to do anything but love ourselves in this very moment.
Look for ways of letting go, making room for different ideologies to come forward.
3. Moving forward
In letting go, we make room for positivity in our lives. For every negative thought we have, see positive in that situation. For every negative word we hear throughout the day, count the blessings that prevail. Transforming negativity to positivity, we transform hell on earth into a paradise not reserved for anyone but all persons.