( this blog post is inspired by a lecture on 4/3/2016 by Pino Ferroni, PhD in Parma Italy)

Even an emotion that seems stronger than us is a passing cloud. We, However, are the sky. Thich Nhat Hanh

 The journey of self-cultivation is to begin to understand our shared capacity as human beings. Even though our emotions can feel like a thunderous rainstorm or a dark and dreary day, we should practice the art of no longer defining ourselves as these feelings – they are the simply the clouds that will pass by, if we learn to let them. And instead, remind ourselves that – We Are the Sky.

As we begin to get in touch with this truth, and we begin to accept ourselves; our physical bodies, our life stories; we begin to accept the reality of who we are. We begin to open to a vast potential inside of us. We begin to cultivate a love affair with ourselves. In ancient Chinese Energetics, at the exact time of our conception, a spark of light enters into the cells that are forming our body and starts to inform our biology. This specialized energy is called Shen and after about three months this energy finds its home in our hearts and becomes our internal GPS. It is the light that emanates from one’s eyes and is expressed as one’s spirit and it will always be with us.

Peter Higgs, a Nobel Prize winning physicist, has demonstrated that there is a universal concept that connects all life. He calls it “energia” or informed energy. It informs us and we inform it. And within our universal energy, if there is a project and it is in alignment with our Shen, then the direction of that project will move towards a harmonious expression.    Our first goal therefore, is to work on becoming more like the earth, welcoming each and every seed (experience, person, condition) without distinction. We can start this process by softening our bodies and relaxing. We when we relax and when we are at ease, our Shen can emanate our into our environment and inform our projects and influence our relationships. When we are tense and tight, there is a constricting of our Shen’s expression and that dynamic can leave us vulnerable to outside influence, our own negative analysis and generally is very depleting for our system.

The biggest challenge we face as human beings are feelings of separation and in turn, criticism and being judgmental. When we are in that state, we generate disharmony, and therefore negativity, low words, and there is no chance of a valuable exchange.

The Daoists state that we are all equal under the sky. And this understanding is where we can begin to accept others, to exchange ideas with one another and grow together. And then we can slowly, slowly we can begin to see our own sky. Only then will we begin to see the darkness in us become the light. And only then will we feel absolutely part of the value and our own heart / sky will open. In our lives, in our families and in our communities it is vital to cultivate this sense of acceptance and openness. It is vital to cultivate the light of your heart so that you may be as expansive as the sky and that your life is moving in the direction of harmony.   Only then will we, as a collective of human beings, be able to create harmony on the earth.