In my own life, when I am not connected to spirit – and ego holds the reins of anything I do – life is lonely, hard, and nothing seems to work.  If I can just wrangle myself back to letting spirit be in charge, everything shifts – and life is effortless, full of grace, and filled with the synchronicity that always means to me that God is in charge.

“Wrangling myself back” to spirit – Aye, there’s the rub.  Ego does not give up its hold easily.

So, when I received my copy of Sonia Choquette’s new book, “The Power of Your Spirit:  A Guide to Joyful Living,” I thought, “I am open and willing to hear whatever you have to say, Sonia!”  I was in one of my particularly strong ego, fear, loss periods – and anything that would help me to get back in spirit’s saddle and let the Divine take over the reins – well, that is always something I want to hear!

Ego really did not want to give up control.  It took me until page 68, when I read the following:  “We all eventually reach a moment in life when we must come face-to-face with a force greater than our ego, or intellect; and, at that point, we’re invited to recognize the holy force, the Spirit.  People struggle against this because it feels as if we’re being asked to hand over our power.  On the contrary, it’s actually an invitation to get to know and accept the most powerful, brilliant, authentic essence of ourselves.”   

Yes, I know that moment.

There’s an expression, “My best thinking got me here” and I can tell you that “here,” for me, at that moment, was a place of sadness, loss, defeat, and what I saw as failure.  I felt as if I had nothing more to lose and, Sonia’s book notwithstanding, I was feeling that the divine was nowhere near and certainly not listening – and I was even angry about that.

I came on that passage and it landed for me as just what I needed to read.  That’s when I started to pay attention.  I went back to the beginning and started over again.

“The Power of Your Spirit” takes the reader on a journey through the four stages of awakening to spirit and allowing the divine – our own spirit – to guide us daily to the greater good for all.  The ego wants us to win – “Me, me, me!” is the ego’s cry.  The spirit wants life to be great for us and for all.  We cannot “win” if someone else has to lose in the process.  There is no grace in that.

The four stages are:  “Awakening to Your Spirit,” when we go from being spiritually unconscious to realizing that there is another dimension – a spiritual one;  “Discovering Your Spirit,” when we read everything spiritual we can get our hands on, take spiritual courses, and listen to spiritual teachers (my particular balliwick);  “Surrendering to Your Spirit,” which means “moving beyond the parameters and perceived safety of your ego and turning your well-being over to the mysterious, unlimited realm of intuition”; and “Flowing with Your Spirit.”  In this last stage, “your ego steps aside and allows your Spirit to completely take over.”

Since I wasn’t doing such a good job of handling my life on my own, those last couple of stages really called to me.  It was time to stop reading, taking courses, and just talking the talk.  “Letting go”, whenever it happened for me, always worked – and perhaps this book, arriving when it did, was the proof that divine guidance was stepping in to remind me that it was time, once again, to “walk” the talk and let spirit take over.

I was especially intrigued with the last stage, about “being in the flow.”  I’ve experienced that before and it has been magical.  I’ve often wished that I could make that happen more often.  Ah, ah…?  “Make that happen?”  There’s the catch.  “Making it happen” is the ego’s game.  Being in the flow is “life experienced with ease, grace, peace, healing, and connection.”  When that’s not happening, you’re not in flow.  When life occurs as peaceful, magical, graceful, and you find yourself in mystical situations that you cannot explain and they work effortlessly – that’s being in the flow.  It’s not something to force.  It’s something to fall into.

As Sonia Choquette says so eloquently, “Flow is faith in action: the synthesis of your true Divine nature merging with your faith in God, the Universe, and life.”

It gives new meaning to the expression, “Go with the flow….”

Deliciously yours in the Mystical Transformation of it All,   Linda

From the Afterword of “The Power of Your Spirit”, a chapter subtitled, “The New Frontier”, a quote that I love  from The Buddha:

“Teach this triple truth to all:  A generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity.”

This is Sonia Choquette, the author of “The Power of Your Spirit: A Guide to Joyful Living.”    She is an internationally renowned author, storyteller, vibrational healer, and six-sensory spiritual teacher.  She’s also the author of The New York Times bestseller The Answer is Simple.  Her website is www.soniachoquette.com.

Here is the link to Hay House where you can buy “The Power of Your Spirit: A Guide to Joyful Living”

http://www.hayhouse.com/details.php?id=5565

 

Disclosure:  I received Sonia Choquette’s book, “The Power of Your Spirit:  A  Guide to Joyful Living” for free from Hay House Publishing.

© Linda Ruocco and “Spiritual Chocolate”, 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Linda Ruocco and ”Spiritual Chocolate”  with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  Thank you.

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I was looking forward to receiving Marianne Williamson’s new book, “A Course in Weight Loss:  21 Spiritual Lessons For Surrendering Your Weight Forever” to review for Hay House Publishing.  As a student of “A Course in Miracles”, the spiritual self-study program that Marianne herself turned me on to many years ago, I had a feeling that this was not going to be your typical weight-loss book – and I was right.

To begin, I’ve been on a diet since last May and lost 16 pounds doing that.  I was so proud of myself for making it through most of the Christmas holidays without gaining anything back – I thought I had this “monkey” off my back for good.

Alas, that was not so.  At the end of the Christmas holidays, my ex-husband and wonderful friend called to tell me he was getting married in the new year.  I never expected my grieving reaction until I realized that I never mourned my marriage the way I needed to.  January started that time – and, in the two months since, I’ve gained back 8 of the 16 pounds I lost.

I received Marianne’s book right in the midst of all the pain of my long over-due grief.

My original plan — before I found myself plunged into my unexpected despair — was to read it and review it here on this blog.    If I could take something on for myself – Well, then, I would, but I really didn’t think I needed it as much as someone else might need it.

How wrong could I have been?  I needed this book to come the very moment it did!   As spiritual as I think I am, the fact is that circumstances can and do throw me for a loop – and send me right back into thinking the old disempowering thoughts about myself that get me to start eating without thinking:  “I’m not good enough,” “I was a terrible wife,” “Who would want me? I’m so selfish”.  Before I knew it, I re-gained the 8 pounds I’d lost!

“A Course in Weight Loss” addresses these very issues of how we disempower ourselves, how we hate how we look, how we feel about ourselves when we don’t feel good about ourselves.  Bottom line?  Marianne’s book was exactly what I needed to appear in my life!

This is a book that is definitely a “course” – a step-by-step approach to – a diet?  NO!  The approach is to assist us in being willing to take on that which, as “A Course in Miracles” says, is our only problem – we think we are separate from God.  It is a step-by-step approach to have us remember Who we are: a beautiful, perfect child of God — and, as such, everything we need is right here already.  We need only remember Who we are.

Marianne’s instructions are graceful and loving:  to build an altar to ourselves and that which we know to be the Divine within us.  Then, Marianne  guides us:  to enhance our altars as a symbol of being in touch with our own spirit,   buying ONE piece of carefully and lovingly chosen piece of fruit to put on the altar,  to write  letters to the self we are leaving behind so as to transform to the Self we are becoming, and to become aware of those triggers that send us right back into our pain.  It is nothing less than a spiritual journey into our own hearts and minds to find the Real Self, the thin and whole spiritual Self that has been there all along.

Marianne doesn’t hold back, that’s for sure.  There is one chapter called, “Exit the Alone Zone” that I am positive she wrote just for ME! I spend a lot of time alone – I work alone in my home office every day – and I always feel a bit lonely about that.  This book made me realize that I – or the ego part of me – orchestrated that”alone-ness”  in order to keep me separate from others – as separate as I sometimes feel when I forget my spiritual path, when I forget that “alone” is an illusion that I have created.

Well, now it’s time to create something new!

There are beautiful prayers at the end of each chapter that  moved me to tears, each one inviting God in to heal us, to heal our un-healed wounds – as only He can do.

I finished reading the book through once, and now I have started it again, beginning with my altar in my window: a beautiful Buddha and a flower and a picture of a laughing Christ.  As “A Course in Miracles” resonated for me as my spiritual path, Marianne’s “Course in Weight Loss” is resonating for me as the path to healing all my wounds, not only weight, but money, relationship, and career.  That is a plan that I am joyfully taking on!

I want to end with one of Marianne’s beautiful prayers – the prayer that is at the end of Lesson 15, “Exit the Alone Zone.”  To me, this is the essence of so much of this wonderful book:

“Dear God, Please melt the walls that separate me from others, imprisoning me within myself.

Please heal my wounded places and free my heart to love.

Help me connect to others that I might isolate no more.

I know, dear God, that when I am alone, I fear;

and when I fear, I self-destruct.

What I suffer now and have suffered before,

dear God, may I suffer no more.

Amen”

And, to that, my own  “Hallelujah!”

Deliciously yours in the Sacred Self that we all are,  Linda

This is Marianne Williamson, a New York Times best-selling author several times over.  Her book, “A Return to Love” is a spiritual classic and widely considered by many to be the cliff notes to ‘A Course in Miracles'”.  Marianne is an internationally known speaker and teacher.  You can visit her site:  www.marianne.com to see where she is speaking in your area.

Here is the link to Hay House publishing where you can purchase Marianne’s book:

<a title="Hay House Link to Marianne's Book" href="“><a href=”http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=JZjyJRjtyzs&offerid=206928.10000509&type=2&subid=0″><IMG border=0 src=”http://affiliate.hayhouse.com/IndivProd/978-1-4019-2152-1.gif&#8221; ></a><IMG border=0 width=1 height=1 src=”http://ad.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/show?id=JZjyJRjtyzs&bids=206928.10000509&type=2&subid=0&#8243; >

Disclosure:  I received Marianne Williamson’s book, “A Course in Weight Loss:  21 Spiritual Lessons For Surrendering Your Weight Forever” for free from Hay House Publishing.

© Linda Ruocco and “Spiritual Chocolate”, 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Linda Ruocco and ”Spiritual Chocolate”  with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  Thank you.

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