Posts Tagged ‘Abraham’

Our Statue of Liberty Has Chains At Her Feet. Do You?

statue of liberty 1 Did you know our Statue of Liberty wears shackles and chains at her feet?  Do you know why?  And why would I (relationship writer) be talking about this?

The Statue of Liberty, that sits on Liberty Island in New York harbor, was conceived by the French abolitionist Edouard de Laboulaye.  In 1865, the year the United States abolished slavery, Laboulaye discussed the idea of a monument to honor the emancipation of slaves in America with French sculptor Frederic Bartholdi.  

(By the way, did you know that slavery didn’t end on Jan. 1, 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln issued his Emancipation Proclamation?  It officially ended on December 6, 1865, the day the 13th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified.  The 13th amendment says “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”)

Although Laboulaye and Bartholdi had envisioned a statue holding broken chains and shackles, American financiers did not want chains on the monument, or any mention of slavery, and insisted the chains be removed.  Because the French faced difficult economic times and couldn’t fund the project fully themselves, they relied on American money to complete the project.  Bartholdi eventually compromised to avoid losing American financial support.  He eventually agreed to remove the chains from Lady Liberty’s hand, and replace them with a book.  

But what many of us don’t realize is that Bartholdi left the shackles and broken chains at her feet.  Because of the height of the pedestal built to support the statue, the shackles and chains are invisible to visitors on the ground.  You can only see the chains from a helicopter.  You can only see them “from above.” 

SO WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH YOU OR ME?

Quite a bit, actually.  I’ll go straight for it.

I very much appreciate that Laboulaye was an abolitionist, and that his desire was to celebrate the end of slavery in America.  I’m all for that.  Being raised Quaker, I remember hearing in Sunday School about Quakers helping slaves.  Quakers actually played a major role in organizing and running the Underground Railroad, which was a system of secret routes and safe-houses that helped runaway slaves reach freedom in the northern states and in Canada.  Quakers believe it is a moral duty to support freedom for all.  After all, Quakers are a pretty spunky bunch and left England for America because they wanted freedom from bowing to the rules of royalty, religious or otherwise.   

Even though we can’t (easily) see the chains on the Statue of Liberty, they are there.  And while it’s doubtful that American financiers, who likely made their fortunes through the use of slaves, were pure in their motives about not wanting chains on the statue, nevertheless, the spirit and essence of freedom is not celebrated by bringing chains of the past (visible or invisible) into the present.    

Broken chains are a celebration of resistance, not freedom. 

It’s impossible to view shackles and chains and think “freedom.”  

To celebrate true clean-as-a-whistle freedom, leave shackles out of the picture.  To create a new life, with total freedom to move forward, it’s vital to turn my full attention from where I’ve been to where I’m going.  While it may be tempting to throw stones as I leave, or emphasize the struggle, that won’t help because it chains me to my past through continuing resistance.  If I’m throwing stones, even silently in my head, I’m still pushing against what happened in my past.  If I’m talking about the struggle, and I’ve got broken chains to prove it, I’m keeping the feeling of my past active in me.  The (not so) funny thing is, resistance to my past glues it to me. 

So, the moral of the story is, don’t be a slave to a habit of resistance. 

Resistance slows you down and keeps you un-free.  

Honoring the struggle of the past will keep you there, too.

Instead, choose to make a clean break. 

This, by the way, requires impeccable awareness. 

It also requires a strong, clear desire to move cleanly in a new direction.  

Can being resistant be useful somehow?  Sure, if you notice it.  Pay attention to how your body feels and you’ll be able to catch it.  Use resistance to remind you to wake up.  When you wake up, be vigilant about noticing when you’ve slipped into exploring old territory again. 

Touch on your past just enough to notice what you want now — in the present. Turn entirely toward that. Use your past as a springboard. 

Original vs. Final Design

Original vs. Final Design

 

BE AWAKE SO THAT YOU CAN BE INTENTIONAL.

If I want my relationship with my husband to improve, I don’t accomplish this by continuously telling my friends why things aren’t working, or what a schmuck he is.  That plan won’t help me create a relationship I truly want!  Pointing out the many ways he’s wrong, and how I’m the smart one, of course  — that won’t help either.

To begin to change, I turn my attention to being who I am, not to the small, un-free, victim version of me.  I don’t keep my attention on feeling stuck.  Or on the belief that he’s the true problem.  I let old ideas sit right where they are.  I don’t pick them up and play with them.  Why?  Because I’m no longer fascinated by them.  Neither am I fascinated by the drama of how things aren’t working.  Or by who’s wrong and who’s right.  It’s old news and it didn’t work.  I leave the old stuff alone, like abandoned toys, and I deliberately and consciously get up and walk out of the room.  

I turn my attention to what I want now, which I’m aware of precisely because of my difficult past.  Gradually, I begin to feel genuine appreciation for my past because it helped me clarify important desires.   This might take a little while, but we can get there eventually.  (Yes, I know.  At first it feels irritating that the biggest thorn in my side becomes my growth opportunity.  Oh, joy!!!)

From my own personal experience, and from working with couples, I can report that it’s often quite a challenge to set aside old expectations in a relationship.  Sometimes it feels more natural to discuss past details and justify why we feel the way we do rather than head straight for a solution.  But talking about the problem reinforces the problem.  Dwelling on the past keeps us there.

If I believe my partner is the reason I can’t be happy, I’m expressing my own personal, self-inflicted version of slavery.  This may sound like an exaggeration, but in essence, it is not.  I’ve been married four times, and divorced three.  I learned about moving toward freedom in marriage number four.  Trust me, you want to leave the chains of the past behind. 

“You’re so free you can choose bondage.” — AbrahamSpring Cherry Blossoms

In marriage or otherwise, we get more of whatever we pay attention to.  If you prefer a feeling of freedom, pay close attention to when you experience that, and celebrate those moments. 

Watch how things change! 

By focusing on what you prefer, shackles fade into the sunset and they keep right on fading unless you miss them, call them back or invite them to tea.  If you leave the past in the past, your new priorities can blossom.  And what’s more beautiful than the long-awaited crocus, or cascading cherry blossoms,  or a spring tulip all pretty in pink? 

 

 

 

 

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How To Talk To Your Wife: Best 17 Minutes I’ve Ever Heard

If you know me at all, you know I’m happy to share helpful information, or a valuable resource about anything, especially about the subject of relationships.  I love passing information to you that is useful in a daily way or a lifetime kind of way, no matter where it comes from 

I love sharing what works. 

Also, if you know me, you’re aware that I’m a very big fan of Abraham-Hicks material.  I’ve listened to hours and hours of their work over the last 10 years or so.   Their material has been beyond valuable to me personally.  And every once in a while, even after all this time, I hear something that totally blows me away. which happened (yet again!) this morning.  I was blown away. 

There I was doing yoga on the mat.   Thinking it would be fun to listen to a YouTube recording while I stretched, I reached over to my phone and found one.  I pushed PLAY as I did my first down dog.

But you know what?  The Abraham conversation I heard was so perfectly unfolding, so masterful, so helpful to anyone in a partnership, that I did a few minutes of yoga and then without thinking, found myself spontaneously, naturally, completely still as I listened to this amazing exchange.  Here’s how it starts.

HE:    I want to know how to stay positive and have a happy marriage when the other partner is really negative. 

(gentle laughter from the crowd, in recognition of his situation)

HE:  (continues) I meditate, I’ll be in a happy mood, and man!  Bam!  She hits me with this stuff, and she always wants to talk about the negative.  And I’ll tell her, hey I don’t want to talk about the negative, I want to talk about the positive.  It’s been a real struggle, especially since we have a 2 month old baby.  And it’s real hard on me.    I’m practicing, I’m trying, and it works in a lot of areas in my life, but this one is the hardest.

april 10-12Benimussa Parkibiza, spain

So Abraham begins very gently with a talk about compassion, saying that compassion isn’t quite like sympathy or empathy.  Instead, according to Abraham, compassion is being in a receptive mode and focused on someone, so that your viewpoint is including the viewpoint of your Source. 

What an amazing definition of compassion. 

So what this young man is given, in 17 minutes and 13 seconds is a very poignant lesson about what to do about talking to his negative wife.  I’m going to keep today’s blog really short so you can spend a little time listening to this totally brilliant conversation.   And if you’d like to join me for an outstanding online relationship event, go to  LOVE THE ONE YOU’RE WITH.   If you like the Abraham recording, you’ll like this event.  I guarantee it.

Here’s the link.  How To Talk To Your Wife.   Enjoy!

 

 

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Can You Spell F-a-m-i-l-y V-i-b-r-a-t-i-o-n?

“She’s just like her mother.”baby girl No, actually she’s not. She learned to be like her mother (or father) or whoever. She was taught by her mother.  She paid attention to her mother. She absorbed. She learned by feeling and sensing.  This kind of learning goes way, way beyond words. In order to survive in a household, in order to gain approval, get along, be loved, receive food and shelter, any child — naturally — is shaped and altered by his or her birth family. Otherwise, why would so darn many people (of any age) need therapy?  Ha!  Let’s be real!!! No, this precious being was not born to question herself.  She learned that after she got here.  She watched.  She listened.  She felt.  She adapted. No, she wasn’t born to care so much what other people think of her.   She learned that after she got here.  Everyone around her did it, and she picked up the idea that it’s just what you do — you care what other people think.  Of course you do. What’s the fastest way to cloud your personal journey?   Factor in other people’s opinions about what’s right for you. Today happens to be the birthday of Alfred Hitchcock.   Here’s an example of learning the family vibration and keeping it forever.  Alfred’s father was apparently a strict man.  Once, when the five-year-old Alfred misbehaved, his father sent him to the police station and they locked him in a cell for a few minutes to teach him a lesson.   Hitchcock was so terrified that he was afraid of the police for the rest of his life, and he rarely drove a car so that he could not be pulled over.  Not to mention the fact that he went on to produce horror and suspense films. Whew.

Free To Be Me

If you want to see how free you were when you were born, watch a baby.  Watch a really young child.  Watch a free-spirited young boy or girl.  I have spent time (lots of time)  studying very young children, and I’ve seen how far from that I am. The simple fact — as I grew up, I learned to be different than I really am at my core.  Maybe you did, too.  We were stellar students. So now I’m all grown up and I find that  most of what I’m unlearning is a vibration, a style, a way of being that I learned in order to make life work “better” a long time ago. spunky girlIn my first marriage, and also in starting my own business many years ago,  I noticed when I hit a wall.  I noticed that my learned knowledge was inadequate.  I knew it.  But I couldn’t seem to change outcomes.  I felt stuck. There are many examples of what goes wrong with the effectiveness of life-coping skills we learned along the way.  Maybe I’m in a relationship where something surprisingly bad happens and the relationship knowledge I picked up along the way from my family, friends and teachers isn’t working.  Maybe my employment experience is awful and what I know falls short.  I have no idea how to fix the pickle I’m in. Maybe I’m betrayed.  How do I deal with that?   What’s the high road?  Can I find it?  Should I find it? Maybe I have children and on a tough day, I wonder how any mother possibly survives being a mother.

What To Do?

Standing in the chaos, the disaster or the problem, I think to myself, “I got nothin’.  I have no idea how to make this better.” So I decide to do something about it.  Surely I can find some answers, some solutions that work.  I go to a personal growth class, read a book or twenty, or go to therapy.  I look for ways to improve my situation.  I reach out.  I observe.  I learn.  I begin to UNDO. As I find ways of thinking or being that are no longer useful, I wonder, “How can I shift this? That’s where I was in 2005. Lucky for me, I ran across one of the most life-changing books I have ever read called “The Astonishing Power of Emotions” by Abraham (Esther and Jerry Hicks).  It set me on a whole new path of personal expansion.  I am forever appreciative of the idea that my emotions can inform me whether I’m on track with who I really am.  It was a whole new idea to me that my emotions are a useful guide. I remember listening to the CD that came with the book.  I was driving on a street in Santa Monica, CA and I heard ideas that filled in missing pieces in my understanding.  I was blown away. I had to pull over and take notes.Astonishing Power of Emotions I had to absorb. The Astonishing Power of Emotions was a game changer.    The book has helped me to be more of who I want to be, and who I always was from the beginning. It takes time to UNDO, and re-learn who you’ve actually been all this time.  It takes time to take baby steps.  Baby steps work.  I’ve been practicing for a number of years now, and it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me.  The ideas in this book put the power to change in my hands.  I always wanted that.

So… back to families

How do we get molded into something we’re not? Every family has a style, a way that it operates, and if you want to be part of a family conversation, you find a way to fit in. We learn how to be a member.  What’s OK and what’s not.  We learn the unwritten rules.  Maybe we dumb ourselves down.  Adjust.  Jog left when we’d really rather go right.  We eat peas and hate them.  It’s not OK to dislike peas.  We  work around it.  Instead of learning to celebrate our preferences, we learn they’re not OK.  It sticks. Forever. I’ve been with families (or at parties) where there are nothin’ but super intellectual conversations — friendly debates  — and in order to participate in a conversation, you’d better be up on your history, politics and current events.  It’s heady.  It’s book learning.  It’s national news on steroids.  In that family, it’s the “right way to be.”  It’s the way to connect.  It’s how you prove yourself, ’cause you need to prove yourself, you know.  You’re not enough.  You have to do something spectacular to be worthy. Oh, heavens. Can you imagine a heart-centered, intuitive, wise, gentle child sitting there listening?  Wondering how she is ever gonna make it in the world ’cause she is so different from them?  And they are “her world.”  And important. And influential to her spirit.  And they will expect her to go to Harvard.   Or be a doctor.  And that’s the last thing she wants to do. Exactly. It happens. All the time. I’ve been to dinner with families who relate through criticizing others.  They gather united around the table and declare what’s wrong with the neighbors.  It’s how they bond.   We’re right and the neighbors are wrong.  We’re better and that’s what makes us OK and (somewhat) worthy.   At least we’re trying to be good and that should count for something. It’s the comparison game.  It’s deadly to a kind spirited little one. In some families, at mealtime the parents have the floor.  The children can’t wait to get the meal over with so they can leave the table.  It’s a time when the parents try to talk with each other and get irritated when the kids need something, or interrupt.  However, I know one family (only one) where the kids were king.  The parents listened and encouraged the children to talk and express center stage.  The parents never left the table until the young ones were done talking.   And guess what?  This family produced outgoing, really expressive, outspoken, confident adults. So we all learned our f-a-m-i-l-y   v-i-b-r-a-t-i-o-n. And now — do we pass that on, or change it? The good news is that we get to decide.

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I live in Hendersonville, NC in the Blue Ridge Mountains with Eric, my partner of 14 years, two cats and a dog, and as many flowers and vegetables as I can plant. I am in favor of wandering time in the morning with a steaming cup of something in my hands as birds call to each other in the woods all around me.  Making fresh food is one of life’s big yummy pleasures, along with singing – especially creating heavenly, improvisational, prayerful, meditational sound.  It is my experience that children are born to teach (remind) parents, not the other way around.  I believe that poet Mary Oliver writes the best bedtime stories available on Earth.   Written by Terri Crosby, In Care of Relationships.  714-240-4889.
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Rise Up by Andra Day

What a great set of words for these oncoming days.

Rise Up

 
You’re broken down and tired
Of living life on a merry go round
And you can’t find the fighter
But I see it in you so we gonna walk it out
And move mountains
We gonna walk it out
And move mountains
And I’ll rise up
I’ll rise like the day
I’ll rise up
I’ll rise unafraid
I’ll rise up
And I’ll do it a thousand times again
And I’ll rise up
High like the waves
I’ll rise up
In spite of the ache
I’ll rise up
And I’ll do it a thousand times again
For you
For you
For you
For you
When the silence isn’t quiet
And it feels like it’s getting hard to breathe
And I know you feel like dying
But I promise we’ll take the world to its feet
And move mountains
Bring it to its feet
And move mountains
And I’ll rise up
I’ll rise like the day
I’ll rise up
I’ll rise unafraid
I’ll rise up
And I’ll do it a thousand times again
For you
For you
For you
For you
All we need, all we need is hope
And for that we have each other
And for that we have each other
And we will rise
We will rise
We’ll rise, oh, oh
We’ll rise
I’ll rise up
Rise like the day
I’ll rise up
In spite of the ache
I will rise a thousand times again
And we’ll rise up
High like the waves
We’ll rise up
In spite of the ache
We’ll rise up
And we’ll do it a thousand times again
For you
For you
For you
For you
Ah, ah, ah, ah
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Cassandra Monique Batie / Jennifer Decilveo
Rise Up lyrics © BMG Rights Management

Terri’s book of photography combined with poetry is here! 100 Words: Small Servings of Whimsy and Wisdom to Calm the Mind and Nourish the Heart.

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Rippling Abs, Anyone?

Rippling Abs, Anyone?

During this strange time in history, I noticed y’all were tackling all sorts of interesting projects. I decided I needed one, too—something positive to remember the pandemic of 2020 by.
 
I decided to pay attention to something I had abandoned…
 
Nope, I’m not cleaning my garage. I am not organizing one single thing. I’m not planting a garden or cleaning up my yard.
 
Instead, I decided to take care of myself better. This, folks, has made all the difference for me.
 
With relatively little time and effort on my part, I feel so much better than I did a month ago.
 
On March 30, I got on the exercise bike and the yoga mat for the first time in a long time, and did 30 minutes each. I liked it so much that I decided to do it every day. But I fell short of that, and changed my commitment to every other day, which felt more manageable, reasonable, and doable.
 
I also get off the bike after every song, take a couple of sips of water, shake out my legs and arms for a few seconds, and get back on. This makes the bike project a reasonable proposition, too.
 
Daily walks of any length—by myself, or with my little guy, Jackson—are a fresh air bonus.
 
My recumbent exercise bike has pulleys to work my upper body while I pedal, which gets my heart rate up fast, and also helps my whole-body strength. It feels good to get up from writing, or doing a consulting session with a client, to do something physically challenging while listening to good music.
 
After only a month, I feel a sheet of muscles on the front of me I haven’t felt for a very, very long time. Goodness gracious. Who knew they were there. I’ll be posting rippling ab photos soon, I’m sure.
 
I have no idea what the scales have to say about my bike/yoga project—I don’t care. Paying attention to scales tends to send me sideways, and therefore, I’m ignoring them completely.
 
But—I LOVE the way I feel! Hang in there, everyone.
 

Terri’s book of photography combined with poetry is here! 100 Words: Small Servings of Whimsy and Wisdom to Calm the Mind and Nourish the Heart.

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Check Out This Troublemaker in Relationships

Check Out This Troublemaker in Relationships

Sometimes we ask intimate partners to do for us what is actually ours to do.

We ask our partner to give us the reassurance, love or appreciation we feel is missing in ourselves, with the hope that they will give us what we’re asking for—and then we’ll feel better. They’ll take care of our problem.

But when they do give us what we’re asking for, it can never be enough, because we have insufficient context for what they’ve given. We haven’t build the inner foundation to receive it, hear it, welcome it, believe it. They try to help, but their love for us falls into our void, our black hole, our love bucket with no bottom.

As always, there’s hope. Check out the video below.

Terri Crosby. http://www.incareofrelationships.com/.

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

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Terri Crosby

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