We fill ourselves up with opinions and attachments and call them strength of character, strength of conviction and strength of concentration. In reality all we are doing is blocking ourselves from fully experiencing Love.  Having a firm opinion can be positive, however, holding on to your ideas to the point of excluding others creates separation.

 
 
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Many people loose sleep because they cannot quiet their thinking. They are stressed out with worry and frustrations. We all experience numerous disappointments. Our expectations go unmet, our plans are blocked by outside circumstances, and our wishes go unfulfilled. Our lives are subject to a myriad of forces beyond our conscious control. More often than not we react with a tension that permeates our bodies and minds. Small frustrations such as interruptions at work and sitting in traffic wield such power over us because they rob us of the illusion of control. You cannot distance yourself from life's inconsistencies, irritations, and upheavels, but you can relinquish your desire for perfect order. When we stop worrying about things we have no control over, we can be at peace, and devote more of ourselves to what is truly important to us.
 
 
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In a beautiful ceremony called a Puja, Guru Leela Mata removes all past karma from my life. This reminds me of absolution where the Catholic priest declares sins to be remitted. Now the slate of my life has been washed clean through the blessings of a Guru.

Freedom in one's life is freedom from the past. By choosing not to define yourself by your past allows for a fresh new beginning in every moment. By giving up thought, awareness naturally arises to greet you now. Self realization will never be found in thinking, only in being. The task to free oneself from one's own thinking is a challenge for most. The majority of people don't even realize that their thinking is separate from them. They think that who they are is their thoughts. Such is the trick of the mind. Recognition of this is the first step on a journey to find your center, and to master your life.
 
 
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Early on many of us begin our search in earnest for that perfect "soulmate" relationship. Few succeed in this endeavor. So they settle for a lukewarm, yet semi-secure association with another.

Many people walk around in quiet desperation while investing years of their life in futile attempts to change their partner into their vision of the "ideal mate". The kindred spirit remains elusive to them. I have yet to meet anyone that successfully created that kind of change in another.  After the experiences of disappontments from betrayal, unrequited love, or one too many verbal putdowns, one is likely to give up all fruition of happiness in relationships.
 
 
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How does one relate to another at an authentic "soulmate" level?  The most exulted level on which one can relate to another is to see the other and to meet the other as soul. The soul is defined as the spiritual and vital part of a person. See within others that they are part of God, and carry the seed of divinity. Listen with your heart because the heart perceives the invisible layers of truth behind the facade life presents us.