April 16

Today's quotation:

When you have too much month for your paycheck, then what you need to do is realize that there is abundance all around you, and focus on the abundance and not your lack and as night follows day abundance will come to you.
  
Sidney Madwed

Today's Meditation:

It took me many, many years to be able to focus on abundance rather than lack, and I can honestly say that I'm still not there yet.  I still fear running out of money and resources; I still fear not having enough food someday and not being able to meet my responsibilities and commitments.  My focus has always been on what I don't have rather than what I have, and now that I'm more often focused on gratitude for what I have, I find that I have more and I don't fear losing it nearly as much.

In my family when I was growing up, the focus was always on lack.  We had little money--sometimes none at all for a month at a time when my father would drink away his paycheck the weekend he received it.  My mother was really good at keeping us fed, so we didn't starve at all, but that was partly because she grew up being poor, also, and she had learned how to stretch food to amazing lengths.  Because of her poverty, though, she focused on what was missing, and she and my father taught us kids to do the same.

The world is full of resources for us, and it's up to us to take advantage of them--nobody's going to fill our baskets for us.  Unfortunately, many of us take a defeatist attitude that says, "I'll never be rich, so I'll never have the good things."  But the truth is that we can have the good things--we have to keep focusing on the abundance around us and figure out ways to tap into it rather than wishing against all hope that we could somehow have just a slice of it.

A lot of it has to do with choices, of course.  I could have a lot more money than I have now if I were to choose to do some work other than teaching, but I love to teach and I'm good at it, so I keep with it.  I do without certain things that I don't really need in order to experience abundance with other things--my wife and I never go to movies in expensive theaters, for example, but with the money we save there, we take nice little weekend trips to nearby areas.  Abundance doesn't mean having it all, but it does mean experiencing a rich and fulfilling life.

Questions to consider:

How might one go about shifting his or her focus from lack to abundance?  What would the benefits of doing so be?

Why do so many of us spend so much time and effort focusing on what we don't have, rather than appreciating what we do have?

Who teaches us our perspectives on lack and abundance?  Why do we pay attention to those "teachers"?

For further thought:

When we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that's present--love, health, family, friends, work, the joys of nature, and personal pursuits that bring us pleasure--the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience heaven on earth.

Sarah Ban Breathnach

  

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