Moments of Bliss

Feb 17, 2024 | Virtues of the Heart

I have mentioned several times in my blogs that I have blissful or ecstatic moments while walking my dog. I think we all have moments like these at some point, usually while doing something that frees us from the constant thoughts in our heads. It can also happen while looking into a child’s eyes, being in nature, creating art, seeing the innocence in a stranger’s face, being completely focused on an activity, meditating, and many more situations.

It is fleeting at best, and it may be hard to describe fully to others, but there is no mistaking this feeling of bliss when it happens. It can lead to wanting more of the same, to spend more time in that blissful space. But life is constantly changing, and our state of being changes with it. Walking my dog seems to activate it more than other activities, even meditation. Part of it is because I like to walk in visually and energetically beautiful surroundings.

But what about the other 99% of my day? Where’s the bliss?

I like to challenge myself. I think that this bliss can be felt while doing anything, even when things go wrong, and we are consumed with problems. I know this is not easy, but I like to break down the walls of conformity in my daily life experience as much as I can remember to focus on it.

The six heart virtues offer me a means by which I can transform my life under any circumstances.

Life happens, problems arise, difficulties show up, and no matter how well I think I’m taking care of myself, mentally, spiritually, and physically, life always seems to have challenges and surprises in store for me.

This is life, and there is no way to change the expanding collective movement of our planet and the human collective that live on it. At this moment, we are the current result or latest model collectively of perhaps millions of years of evolution. That movement of evolution is ongoing and does not bow to my personal needs. If this is the case, then I would be wasting my time trying to change the world outside. Yet I am a product of that million-year history and refinement. I am expressing that history in my human experience now. I can only change myself and my response to what I experience. In other words, I change how I interact with the world I see.

Because of the momentum of our long history and evolution, we are locked in patterns that slowly change or evolve into something new or different. It is hard to change, to decide to live differently, to recognize that something is not working, why it is not working, and what to do to change it. The drift of complacency and conformity is a powerful force.

Such is the case with 99% of my life which is less than blissful. Bliss does not happen to me because of what happens out in the world. Bliss happens because I shift out of the pattern of history, the movement of millions of years of evolution. Mostly I am unconsciously consumed by my mind and the ongoing pattern of thoughts that are unchallenged or unquestioned. This historical drift of limited consciousness is based on the idea that I am a separate being, a human, alone, vulnerable, judgmental, fearful, and ignorant of my real identity.

Moments of clarity and purpose come to me in many ways, through many voices, and I resonate with them. Intellectually I can believe it and I intend to live in this new manner. But what holds me back?

Simply put, the drift of history, the pattern of familiarity, and the fear of the unknown. It is compelling and relentless. Yet here I am again, questioning my experience and my ability to make a change in my life to a more meaningful expression and purpose.

I have identified my resistance and my problem; I Understand my situation. I know what I want. So, what is left? It is intention, commitment, having the tools, and consciously use them. The tools I use are the six heart virtues. The conscious doing is staying awake as much as I can to use the tools in my daily life. This may be a slow process, but it facilitates change at a deep level and is not to be judged.

Here’s an example:

Recently, I found out that I need some serious dental work done. I always felt I had good teeth and never really worried much about my teeth. So, it was a shock to find out I needed to have 4 teeth replaced with implants. It was even more of a shock to find out how much it would cost. I went into a defensive mode, angry at the dentist, and myself, and generally felt like a victim of the world. I felt vulnerable physically and financially. I languished in this state for several days, then in a moment of lucidity, I remembered I had the power to change this situation. I could not change the situation of my teeth, but I could take control of the situation internally and work things to my benefit. I was naturally inclined to just listen to my dentist and accept his assessment and hefty cost, but I decided to do some research and get other consultations.

Compassion, and Valor

I accepted the fact that I needed work done and I was going to make the best of it. As is the case so often, I first applied Compassion for myself. I had to push myself (Valor) to make appointments with other dentists. Their prices fluctuated by a few thousand dollars. I was feeling I had to decide on one of them, but it was still a lot of money and I had to figure out how I would pay for this. I was discouraged, but I was committed to working in alignment with the universe.

A few days later, as “fate” would have it, I was in my art studio, starting a fire in the wood-burning stove, as I gathered some paper to start the fire, I noticed an ad for a dentist and as I looked closer, it said they had special pricing for the very work I needed. It was one of those moments where you can feel the synchronicity. I was amazed at how this happened. It gave me some hope! I did some research on him, visited his website, and read many reviews of his patients. Everything looked too good to be true! I called the dentist and set up a free consultation appointment.

Bliss and Appreciation

Long story short, this ended up being the best thing that could have happened, I liked the dentist very much, and his office offered discounted prices for those who did not have insurance. His special prices ended up being half the price of the other dentists and to top it off I really liked him and found him to be very knowledgeable and confident.

Finding his ad in a stack of papers that were for starting fires seemed almost unbelievable to me! It was like an act of divine synchronicity, and I was beaming with Appreciation. It seemed to me to be a beautiful demonstration of how the universe works with us if we are open, alert, and trusting in our efforts of conscious doing. Finding this dentist and solving my financial needs shifted my mood and outlook in a major way. I was in a state of bliss, expressing deep appreciation for days about the way things changed from angry dread to bliss and Appreciation.

I could have so easily missed this beautiful demonstration of how the universe is willing to work with me if I had given in to my anger and frustration and gone with the status quo.

But I didn’t, I chose to step out of victimhood and take my power back in the only way that matters–to dance in alignment with my partner–the universe.

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