Monthly Web Columns

LIFE 101

By Coach Cary Bayer
        As April 15 is upon us, the day that income tax returns are due, many people think about money.  There’s a lot of thinking about money in one of my very favorite workshop offerings called “Spirit & Money: Prospering by Doing what you Love.”  It’s designed to heal the separation in the minds of so many people who believe that spirit is here and money is there and, like east and west, the twain never meet.  This is despite the fact that east and west have long met.  If the twin never met, we wouldn’t have yoga studios, meditation classes, and martial arts from Asia.  The east and west have met, and it’s high time that spirit and money meet, too.
        Our currency itself speaks graphically and conceptually to this point, as well.  Every single piece of American currency, whether it’s the copper Lincoln penny or the Benjamin Franklin one hundred dollar note, says, “In God We Trust.” While I know that we base our economy on the standard of gold, it seems as if there’s some basis on God, as well.   This official motto of the U.S. has appeared on all our money since 1957—at the height of the Cold War with the Soviet Union, after making its debut on all our coins in 1864.
        “In God we Trust” replaced the unofficial American motto of E pluribus unum,” Latin for “out of many, one.”  This was adopted in 1782 when the Great Seal of the United States was created.  Out of many, one, can be interpreted in terms of our melting pot population; out of the many different ethnic mixtures that comprise the U.S. we are one people.  It also has a spiritual significance: despite the obvious diversity of humanity, there is only One Reality, a spiritual one.
        Then there’s the matter of the all-seeing eye on the back of paper currency.  It’s also known as “the eye of providence,” or an “omniscient Ubiquitous Deity” in the style of Renaissance design.  Eventually the all-seeing eye came to be used officially by Masons as a symbol for the Ultimate Reality.  The all-seeing eye of God is noted several times in the Bible.  One such occurrence is in Psalm 32:8, which states: “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.”
        There are also many mythic and pagan symbols, as well.  The eagle is almost identical to the image of Horus, the Egyptian god often appearing as a falcon.  The pyramid is ripe with meanings.  There are 72 bricks depicted, perhaps symbolic of the 72 names of God in the Kabbalah, the Jewish mystical book.  Speaking of Jewish mysticism, the mystic Masons might have had something to do with the Star of David that is formed by combining certain letters in the Latin, Annuit Coeptis Novus Ordo Seclorum, which translates as “Announcing the Birth of the New World Order.”  Trace the A in Annuit, the second O in Ordo, the N in Novus, the M in Seclorum, and the S in Coeptis, which, when reconfigured, stands for Mason, and which visually reveals the Star of David.
        There’s another design of the Star of David on our currency.  Examine the arrangement of the 13 stars in the right-hand circle on the back of paper currency. You’ll discover that they’re arranged in the shape of a Star of David. How did this occur in a Christian nation?  Myth says the order came from none other than George Washington, the Father of our Country.  There might not have been a country to be a father or a president of had it not been for the extraordinary generosity of Prussian/Polish émigré Hayim Solomon, an affluent Jewish financier living in Philadelphia.  He had loaned the colonies much of the money it needed to fund the American Revolution--some $600,000 in late 18th century dollars—about two thirds of which was still not repaid at the time of his death in 1785, at the age of 45, leaving his family penniless.  Solomon said he wanted nothing for himself but that he would like something for his people. The Star of David was the result.
        While the First Amendment guarantees separation of church and state, there are clearly spiritual influences on every dime we spend and mint.




Emotional and Spiritual Skills for Success-  #4 in the Love Yourself,
Lose the Weight series

by Patricia J. Crane, Ph.D.

Have you ever used your weight as an excuse not to participate more fully in life, not to have a relationship, to avoid sex in the relationship you’re in, not to look for a new job? Are you willing to let go of your excuses? They are just a way of not loving yourself.

Mirror work- talking to yourself while looking in the mirror – is a powerful technique for learning to love yourself as you are making changes in any area. Look into your eyes and say to yourself, “I’m done with excuses. My weight is not the issue. I am willing to participate in life regardless of my weight.” Notice how you feel. Then tell yourself “I love and accept you just the way you are. I support you in all your new habits. You have been doing the best you can. It’s OK. I support you in making positive changes.”
Then tell yourself anything else that is important for you to know/hear.  You are claiming the wonderful being that you are. If you feel a lot of emotion coming up as you do the mirror work, that’s OK!  

It’s important to become aware of emotional triggers for overeating or making choices you know aren’t healthy. Almost everyone uses food to deal with emotional issues at some time or other. It’s how often you do this that determines if it’s a problem.

Starting now, every time you eat (especially outside of meal times), ask yourself first, What am I feeling right now? Can I resolve this feeling without eating? Take some deep breaths and acknowledge that you want to eat, “Yes, I want to eat now, but I can wait out this impulse for 10 seconds. I am willing to feel my feelings and deal with them.”

Here is an exercise to help you develop more awareness around emotions and eating.

Close your eyes, take some deep breaths, and relax your body. Keep doing some deep breaths until you feel relaxed. Now, as though you are an observer of your own life, go back over the last two weeks and notice your eating patterns: when you ate, what you ate, where you were, and who was with you. Don’t judge or criticize, simply notice. When you ate for emotional reasons, what was going on?.......

Now go back even farther in time, letting your mind go to the time you first began overeating…. How old were you? What was going on for you? What feelings were you suppressing?  Accept that this was your way of coping at that time. Feel compassion and love for yourself. Go to another situation where you overate….. What emotions were you feeling then? Find a few others………… Then imagine you are looking at yourself in the mirror. Tell yourself, “I understand more now. I truly do love and accept you just the way you are.”

Bring your awareness back to the present moment. Take some deep breaths and stretch. Open your eyes.

If you found a connection between feeling stressed and eating, here are some easy ways to deal with that. Stress increases your metabolism and so you feel fatigued. This can prompt you to want to eat something like a candy bar for fast energy. Ultimately, this leads to more fatigue because your blood sugar plunges after spiking. First, as much as possible plan your meals so you eat on a schedule. Eat low fat, high protein meals to keep your blood sugar balanced. Second, have some healthy snacks available, like protein bars or veggies and a low fat dip. In other words, prepare ahead of time. Third, practice deep breathing exercises to help you reduce stress.

Learning to handle your emotions effectively is truly an ongoing process. If you started eating emotionally and gaining weight as a child, then talking to your Inner Child can really be healing.

 If you gained a lot of weight after some traumatic event in your life, you may need professional help in dealing with it. Look for a therapist who offers a spiritual approach as part of their therapy. In the US, you can find them advertising in spiritual newsletters. Or ask some friends for a referral. Affirm that you are guided to any resource you need to create a healthy relationship with food. 

A spiritual course, A Course in Miracles, says, “Guilt holds the behavior.” So if you are feeling guilty (or ashamed or embarrassed or even angry at yourself) for gaining weight and not losing it, it’s time to let go of the guilt and any other emotions associated with your weight. True, easier said than done. Begin with “I am willing to let go of the emotions that have kept me stuck.”

For some people, prayer is a potent force for changing behavior. Asking Spirit, God, the angels, or ascended masters to assist you in your desire for changes takes the burden off you “doing it all yourself.”

Are you willing to forgive yourself? At the highest spiritual level, there is no need for forgiveness, but in our human selves it is another piece of the foundation for permanent change. And sometimes that change can occur very quickly when you stop feeling guilty, forgive yourself, and love yourself right where you are at the moment.  Be kind to yourself. You are worth loving!

--Patricia J. Crane, Ph.D. studied personally with Louise Hay and, with husband Rick Nichols, is authorized to lead Heal Your Life® training programs in Louise’s philosophy. She is also the author of Ordering from the Cosmic Kitchen: The Essential Guide to Powerful, Nourishing Affirmations. and