Be A Happy Person

 

“Mind is the means to happiness.”

~ the Upanishads, a collection of wisdom by the ancient mystics of India.

 

Dear readers,

In a Q&A video with Zen Buddhist Master Thich Nhat Hanh, someone asked, “What can I do to help others?” He answered, “Be a happy person.”

Our happiness helps others, just like our peace helps others.

That answer may sound too simplistic, but it is actually quite complex and profound, because, for most humans, it is not easy to be happy.

Being happy is a choice and a commitment and a practice. We choose happiness, and then we have to keep making choices that create and maintain that happiness. It’s an ongoing, moment by moment process, with plenty of pitfalls into un-happy zones.

Being happy has been challenging throughout human existence, but perhaps it is more difficult now than ever before.

Knowing that my happiness helps others inspires me to keep happy-ing up, again and again. Over the years I have learned many tools for happy-ing up, which I recently compiled in a book: Reaching for Orange: Practices, Visualizations, & Blessings to Help You Happy Up Your Life. In the Practices section I explain the term “Happy-ing-Up” as follows:

“Happy-ing Up is not the same as putting on a fake smiley face. When you do practices to Happy Up, you actually shift your state UP to a feeling of happiness. So it is not an act of “fake it till you make it,” but rather, it is an act of elevating yourself to a higher vibration in which you truly do feel happy. Sometimes that happy state only lasts for a few minutes, and that is okay. Simply keep practicing and happy-ing yourself up again and again.”

And, beyond helping others, being happy helps boost your body’s immune system, which is an especially good thing during a virus pandemic!

I hope this post is helpful to you or to someone you love.

May the happiness centers activate in the human minds!

May all beings be free of suffering.
May all beings be happy.

With happy vibes,
StarFire Teja

 

 

Photo by Bradley Howington on Unsplash.

 

Where Do “Don’ts” and “Shoulds” Belong?

Dear readers,

I’m going to be honest with you here. I do not like advice.

I really am not sure when this aversion began, but in recent years I have noticed a growing irritation with being given advice. Can you relate to this?

If I view this through a negative lens, I can see that my “ego” is getting triggered and causing closed-minded reactions. I mean, I used to be much more open to the suggestions of others… Or was I?

Was I actually open, or was I just acting open because it wouldn’t be very “spiritual” of me to not be open to advice? Perhaps with age and experience has come an inability to fake openness…

On the sunny side, if I view this through a positive lens, I can see that I am a very strong, independent woman who likes to figure things out for herself. I like to study situations and do lots of self-inquiry and find my own way. I like to make my own rules and then break them or change them as I feel like it!

So… as this relates to blogging… I think for those of us who feel called to help others (as lightworkers, healers, teachers, etc.), this matter of giving advice is a delicate one. We’ve learned some things and we are burning to share with the hopes that others may benefit… and yet, sometimes there is a fine line between helping and harming. I addressed this topic in a previous post, “Spiritual Helper 101 = Tips for Being a Good Friend.”

When I write blog posts, I really try my utmost to be helpful, by sharing in ways that do not sound like advice-giving. I may fail at this sometimes, but I really do try my best.

Another thing to consider when writing helpful blog posts, is something I learned in hypnotherapy school: the subconscious mind doesn’t hear negatives. So if you say “Don’t focus on the trauma,” the deeper mind does not hear the negative word “don’t,” so it only hears “focus on the trauma.”

This is why the standard instruction for making affirmations is to make your affirmations positive and in the present tense… So instead of saying, “I don’t want to be sad,” you say, “I want to be happy,” or better yet, you say, “I am happy.” When you say that you are happy, in the present tense, the subconscious mind then works hard to make it true already!

What do you think about this topic? Do you think it’s possible to be helpful without giving advice?

With deep respect for the unfolding of your being,
StarFire Teja

SpiritualHelper2020_StarFireTeja

 

Orange wall photo by Alejo Reinoso on Unsplash.

 

A Shout-Out to WordPress

Dear readers,

I am not getting paid for this post… and, well, I haven’t gotten paid for the other 323 posts I’ve published on this blog either! 🙂 (A while back I shared about my non-salesperson status in a post, “Realizing (Again) That I Am Not a Salesperson!”)

Due to my homebound status (thanks to Fibromyalgia and an Anxiety Disorder), I am not working at a job, but I still want to be of helpful service to others, in ways that are doable for me… And writing helpful blog posts continues to be not only manageable, but quite enjoyable…

Blogging would not be so enjoyable if it weren’t for WordPress. It is so incredibly user-friendly. I am somewhat savvy with computers, and I don’t have much patience for sites that are not easy to navigate. WordPress is truly outstanding in that aspect.

I really love how WordPress sends out notification emails when people like and comment on my posts. And the tagline at the bottom of their emails is pretty witty-adorable: “Thanks for flying with WordPress.com.”

For those who pay for a WordPress plan, live chat support is available from “Happiness Engineers”… How cute is that? On that page, it says, “Our Happiness Engineers can answer any questions that you have about WordPress.com, how it works, and how best to use it.”

Well, since I’m blogging as a helpful service to others and making zero income from it (thusfar), I am not paying for a plan with WordPress, but because WordPress is so well designed, I have not even once needed to ask them for support. That says a lot, doesn’t it?

Thanks for visiting this online StarFire Temple of Happiness. I hope you enjoyed my shout-out to WordPress.

May you be bright, merry, and healthy!

With much gratitude and positive vibes,
StarFire Teja

 

Photo by mvp on Unsplash.

 

You the Bell

 

“Let this darkness be a bell tower and you the bell. As you ring, what batters you becomes your strength. Move back and forth into the change.”
~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Dear readers,

In my lifetime I have had a tendency to go into regular spells of darkness… But, I have a very strong base of happiness in me, so I know how to create happy moments, even when I’m being battered in darkness!

How about you, is your base of happiness strong?

My dear ones, I sincerely hope that my posts help you to Happy Up. 🙂

With happy hope even in my dark time of grief,
StarFire Teja

 

Photo color enhanced by StarFire Teja. Original photo by Chris Barbalis on Unsplash.

 

Monday Morning Musings on Grief (Again)

 

“The edge of the keenest sorrow wears with time and perhaps Heaven’s kindest gifts to men are sleep for the fleeting cares of the day and forgetfulness for the deep-seated injuries of the heart.”
~ C. Rajagopalachari in his Ramayana

 

Dear readers,

Does that quote resonate with you?

From where I sit with my cuppa black coffee on this rainy morning, I’m not so sure what I think about that quote. Throughout my adult life, I have experienced pretty serious grief a handful of times, and those sorrows did get better with the passing of time (and a lot of crying)… But, tomorrow marks one calendar month since my Dad died, and this grief of losing a parent is a whole new level of emotional pain that I had not experienced before. It is just terrible, and it is difficult to imagine ever feeling better.

One nice feature of this blog is the search box… Last night I typed in the word “grief” and re-read some of my own posts about grief… (And I discovered that I had already written a post with the same title as today’s post, so that’s why I added the word “Again”, smiley face!) If you or someone you know is now grieving, these posts might be helpful so I’ll put the links here ~

~ “Protection Prayer When Grieving

~ “Riding a Grief Wave Successfully

~ “Monday Morning Musings on Grief

One of the stranger aspects of grief is the shock and denial stage. Over this past month, I find that I alternate between the cushion of shock, with thoughts like, “This didn’t really happen… He couldn’t have really died…” and the pain of reality with thoughts like, “His body is buried in the Earth… we will never see him in the physical again…” With regards to this musing, I must say that I much prefer the barrier that the shock provides. When I’m in the shock, the pain softens because everything feels unreal, fuzzy, numb, and even surreal. Even though, in the back of my mind, I know that he really died, the shock makes me feel like it is all a bad dream and soon I will wake up and my Dad will be here like before…

But I am intelligent, so I know logically that he is actually gone forever from the physical realm… Grief definitely muddles the mind! Can you relate?

After my Dad died I took a few weeks off from blogging, and when I returned to my great love of blogging I didn’t know how often I would post… Well, if you’ve been following this blog then you know that I have been posting daily (this is the 11th day in a row)… And I think I need to slow down the pace, because I am feeling pretty overwhelmed. It is natural to feel easily stressed when grieving, so that is why it is recommended to be easy on yourself. Great sorrow requires great self-love and tender self-care. So, I will still be posting here, but I’m really going to try to slow down the pace! 🙂

Thank you so much for reading my musings on grief today. I hope this post is helpful to you or to someone you love.

With much, much love,
StarFire Teja

 

Photo by Gabriele Ibba on Unsplash.