In early January I went to LA for Rob Bell's 2 day workshop on Finding Your Groove for Creatives and Communicators. You will be hearing about it a lot over the next few months because so much of what he taught set me free in different ways and it is going to take some time to process and share all of it with you.
One of the things he talked about was the problem many of us who communicate about matters of spirit face. He said that questions of grace, blessing, and favor are as hard as questions of suffering.
To the question "why did my loved one die?" there is no satisfactory answer.
To the question "why am I lucky enough to have this work to do; how in the world did I get this gig?" there is no satisfactory answer.
This rang true for me because I often wonder that a lot. I've been sitting with the idea for a few weeks now and feel it unfolding within my soul. The energy of this idea, this truth, if you will, is flowing through my established synapses, shaking them up, and creating new pathways. It wasn't a cure all but a strong beginning.
One other thing I fret about is that there is so much hunger, need, homelessness, real immediate physical need in the world. Isn't it a little presumptuous of me to pursue spiritual work, and asking people to pay for it, when others are starving? Let me tell you, I've beat myself with this particular whip pretty regularly. Which is really an ungrateful act. It is kind of like kicking sand in the face of a generous gift from the Divine. But I was saved from further beatings by a few revelations.
I thought about how some people do work that attends to our immediate physical needs. Some focus on education. Others on entertainment. All these areas are important for human life, for not just surviving but thriving. While my work is kind of educational and some might say kind of entertaining...but I figured out a word that feels more accurate: enriching. The goal of my work is to enrich someone's life during their time as a spiritual being having a human experience on this planet.
I told this to my wise and practical wife. She suggested that I find a charity or organization that is attending to a cause or need that just totally breaks my heart. Whenever I do work that brings me the kind of joy that makes me feel a little guilty, I should give a portion of that to that cause or need. It is like balancing out two extremes: joy/abundance versus heart break/need.
As Above, So Below. As Within, So Without. I believe this. Lisa's idea is not just practical, it also incorporates sound magical principles. Not only will the actual money help the cause, because the money was generated by joy, love, and abundance, it will create a flow of joy and love toward the cause. The $25 or whatever will have value beyond the monetary...it will create a magical shift of energetic as well as financial abundance.
Yes, questions of grace, blessing, and favor are hard. Being grateful and doing something concrete to show that gratitude is so much better than beating myself up over the great gift that is my life.
In tarot terms, the suit of Pentacles explores the flow of resources in the world. Finding the right balance between maintaining your own life and participating in the flow of resources in the world isn't always easy. But for now, it's a balance I'm working hard on getting just right.