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No Scrubbing Needed

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time on my hands
can I wash them clean
send the past down the drain
scrub away the future
leaving nice pink rosy fingers of now
touching everything within easy reach
and yet grasping only momentarily
to express my depth of gratitude
for the warmth in every touch
then releasing it forever

before a memory
sticks to my skin
and calls me back to the sink
for another washing

time out of my hands
I can only touch
but can never hold more than a single breath
until it too goes
leaving only another now
no scrubbing needed

Download a free ebook of Nirmala's spiritual poetry.


We Are All Baby Ducks

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Here is an excerpt from Nirmala's newest book, Living from the Heart. You can download this book for free on the free ebooks page or purchase a paperback copy in our online bookstore.

Realizing your true nature as awareness would be incredibly simple except for one thing: This awareness that you are can be shaped. Just like water takes on the shape of the container you pour it into, this awareness that you are is shaped by your thoughts, feelings, desires, hopes, dreams, worries, sensations, and experiences. It is shaped by everything that happens. Sometimes this shaping is so strong that it seems the awareness has gotten very small and that you have gotten very small. This is not really a problem as the awareness itself is not harmed and it can always expand again.

This awareness is not only temporarily shaped by experience, but can become imprinted onto an experience or an object in awareness. You may have heard of how baby ducks become imprinted in the first few hours of their lives: They will follow whatever or whomever they are first aware of, usually the mother duck. However, they can also be imprinted on anything, including a scientist who is studying them, in which case, they will follow the scientist around.

There is nothing wrong with this; it helps baby ducks survive in the wild to follow their mother wherever she goes. It is an inherent capacity of all awareness to become imprinted, or conditioned, in this way. Every time an experience leaves a lasting impression in your awareness, you have been imprinted or conditioned by that experience...


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Gratitude is usually suggested as a well meaning prescription. We are told to be grateful for what we have, or to show some gratitude. And yet it is difficult to feel something you are told to feel, even if it would feel better than what you are feeling. But what if gratitude is a description of your deeper nature? What if deep within you already feel gratitude?

Awareness is full of gratitude. It loves the sensations, experiences and thought forms that it touches in each moment. There is a natural appreciation for all that exists in awareness itself. It can't help itself, because on the deepest level awareness recognizes everything it touches as its own self. There is only awareness and so that is what it experiences in every moment, and that is what it is grateful for.

And yet that is not our conscious experience in many if not most moments. It seems like much of what awareness touches is not something we appreciate or are grateful for. What about our problems and our painful experiences? It can seem ridiculous to suggest that we are full of gratitude for those, when we are rejecting them.

The key to finding this deeper level where gratitude flows so freely is very simple. It only requires that you notice the gratitude you do feel in this very moment. And when you are rejecting or resisting a problem or painful experience, what you are grateful for is the capacity to reject or resist. Even in a moment of active opposition to some aspect of our experience, we are not usually also in active opposition to our own opposition. We are actually happy to be so upset about our situation, as we have been taught to believe that this upset will help us feel motivated to deal with or change the problem...