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#3621 - Tuesday, August 11, 2009 - Editor: Jerry Katz

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  • Jerry Katz
    #3621 - Tuesday, August 11, 2009 - Editor: Jerry Katz The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights ... I m always pleased to feature
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 11 7:06 PM
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      #3621 - Tuesday, August 11, 2009 - Editor: Jerry Katz  

      The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights

       


       

      I'm always pleased to feature the articles of Dr. Stewart Bitkoff. He writes from the place of love, surrender, and the Sufi Path. Perhaps most notably, he's practical, telling you how to surrender to God while making breakfast. I think this may be his best article yet!

       


       

      Spiritual Traveler: Co-creator & Servant
      By Dr. Stewart Bitkoff

      The Sufi is absent from self and present with God.
      -Hujwiri

      For the spiritual traveler, one of the most intriguing spiritual practices, through the use of
      focused prayer, turns free will choice into submission to the higher. In some paths, submission to
      the higher is the goal and accompanying this level of service is greater responsibility. In this
      transmutation, love is the catalyst. As the traveler loves, they are brought closer to their goal,
      becoming an extension of the divine.

      Opposites Reconcile

      Following a spiritual path, early on, travelers are taught that life is up to them: we come into
      the earth phase with a multitude of talents, free will, a destiny or life plan and a wondrous world
      to express the many aspects of self.

      Similarly, spiritual travelers are taught that higher levels of spiritual expression are achieved
      through submission; turning personal intention over to that which is highest both in themselves and
      the universe. Further in submission or giving up of self, which is not passive but active, the
      spiritual traveler finds completion and service. According to Hujwiri, the great master or Sufi
      exists as an extension of the higher will; with each breath and action taken for the Beloved.

      At first glance, personal action based upon free will choice and submission to that which is
      highest appear opposed, and directly opposite to each other. Yet for the spiritual traveler, there
      is a point at which these seemingly contradictory states merge; this coming together of personal
      will and submission to the higher is achieved through the alchemy of love.

      Bending of Will

      Because we are in love, we wish to do what our Beloved wants. This fire of love, or burning,
      described by the mystic alters the consciousness: turning personal need into submission or bending
      of will; by practicing this bending of will, like the willow in the wind, the traveler becomes a
      stage upon which the Divine enters.

      As the willow bends to the wind
      And the leaf curls to the rain,
      O Lord, I surrender myself to You.
      -SB

      In spiritual submission, outcome is tied to intention: is the action taken for self or for
      something higher. For example, does one get-up in the morning: shower, shave, eat and dress for
      self or as a servant? Daily entering into the commerce of the world to make the world better, as a
      representative of the most high, or as a 'player' in the game of life- amassing as much personal
      wealth as possible?

      As in any organization, or chain of command, individual action is delegated. In order to be a good
      worker, parent, or servant we use all talents, including free will, to make the situation and world
      better. Spiritual travelers are not automatons that assume God wants this or that; they take action
      based upon an evaluation of what is happening in front of them and through personal intention, turn
      this action over to God, i.e., submit to the situation.

      Serving Breakfast

      From ordinary life, here is an example to illustrate the point at which free will bends, submitting
      to the situation, and love enters.

      Let us assume that I am tired, but I need to get-up early in the morning to prepare breakfast for
      my children; that is my job as a parent. However, as a spiritual traveler, because I do not have
      time for my morning meditation- I must make breakfast- I wish to turn this duty of making breakfast
      into a prayer. Remember, I am tired with a poor attitude from staying-up late the night before and
      really wish that I didn't have to do this 'chore.' Question: How do I get past personal friction
      and resistance, turning breakfast into a cheerful activity and spiritual practice?

      Answer: By slowly repeating, feeling and embracing the Light in each word, a version of the prayer
      of submission: this practice turns breakfast into a prayer; a reverent opportunity to make the
      world a little better. "O Lord, help me prepare breakfast for my children with joy and gratitude,
      so, that they might grow and be healthy, fulfilling their role as your servant. In this duty, help
      me be cheerful and serve your will. O Lord, I surrender myself to You."

      Potentially, the energy of these words, in the form of a prayer of intention, alters my
      consciousness. A little happier, I serve breakfast to my children. By slowly repeating these words
      through the grace of the Path, a 'chore' turns into spiritual practice. For those moments, I have
      aligned my thought and action with the higher destiny.

      Co-Creator

      According to the Koran, each traveler can serve as God's vicegerent or representative on earth.
      This is our birth right and higher destiny. Through repeating the prayer of submission, we can turn
      daily activity into a form of spiritual practice. Each traveler is born with many talents and free
      will choice; each is destined to rise higher and participate as co-creator in the Divine Plan. And
      because God Loves us; God has created a Way or Path for us to reach higher. This is the path of
      submission; the path of love and service to humanity. We love, serve and help, because it is our
      higher nature and the nature of God.

      God said, "I loved to be known, so I created creation." This is reflected in the ones whom God
      loves. The qualities of loving, knowing, hearing, seeing, will, power, talking are all God's gifts
      to humanity. But God's greatest gift is love, the manifestation of His love of knowing Himself.
      Love is the primary sustenance for human beings. They cannot live without it, and mankind learned
      to love from God. -Sheikh Badruddin

      ______

      Listen to Dr. Bitkoff's weekly show on internet radio: Practical Wisdom, Tuesday 1-2 pm, go to
      www.pibco1.com.

      Also by Dr. Bitkoff, A Commuter's Guide to Enlightenment (Llewellyn, 2008) and Journey of Light:
      Trilogy
      (Authorhouse, 2004); these books are available on Amazon.com or from the publisher. To
      contact author go to
      www.stewartbitkoff.com.

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