Grounded, Centered, Focused, Awake, Aware, Alive

  1. There are four things doubled into eight things:









            These eight things produce:




            Enabling us to be:







            All of this blends in together, flows into and out of one another, to form the shape our lives take between birth and death. The degree to which we recognize, participate in, cooperate and collaborate with, the process of incarnating the truth of who we are throughout our life determines how well we live.

2. This is how I think about the elements in this process:

The Dao is the guiding principle of arrangement and harmony, governing the rhythm and flow of the tides and times of our life.

Dharma is the blueprint, the design, directing each of our lives and the overall shape of existence. It is the original essence, the original nature of all things, and works in harmony with the Dao to shape and form the way things come together in light of their original essence, nature, in conjunction with the situations and circumstances of life in physical reality. There is a spiritual—that is invisible, unknown, unknowable—intent built into each of us that is suggested in Sheldon Kopp’s formula, “Some things can be experienced, but not understood, and some things can be understood but not explained”—which endeavors to be expressed, exhibited, incarnated, realized in the fact of our lived existence within the time and place, context and circumstances of our day-to-day experience. Dao, Dharma, Kairos and Grace merge and flow together in the emergence of our original essence/nature in the day-to-day experience of our life in the world.

Kairos is the appointed time, the right time, the time for doing what needs to be done. It is the time the egg hatches, or is fertilized. The time the fruit ripens. The time the baby walks, or learns to ride a bicycle, or learns to swim. It is always time for something—maybe, the time for waiting for the time to act. But what it is time for here, now, and when it is time to act, are things that “can be experienced, but not understood, understood but not explained.” And so, we have to listen and look. We have to stop and see/hear. We have to know who we are and what is ours to do, and when to do what, where and how. We have to live mindfully aware of our place in the time and place of our living, and take our cues from within in knowing what’s what and what needs to be done about it and how to do it with the gifts/talents/abilities/proclivities/special powers/etc. that come with us from the womb.

Grace is the magic that holds it all together, guides it all on its way, produces what needs to be in order for all of it to be realized in the moment-to-moment experience of our life in the world.

Virtue is the conscious realization of,

  1. That we have an original essence/nature, and
  2. That it is our place to incarnate it, live in light of it, in partnership with it, in expressing it, exhibiting it, and bringing it to life in the moment-to-moment experience of our life in the world

Virtue is our living aligned with our original essence, our original nature, in the here and now of everyday life.

Vitality is the creative principle that we bring to life in our life, which, in turn, brings us to life in our life, in a self-generating cycle of enthusiasm, excitement, wonder, amazement, delight, awe, rapture, bliss in response to the realization that we can be—and are—a part of this.

Energy is movement, strength, power, breathing, hearing, seeing, doing, being a particular expression of life in each moment of life.

Spirit is a quality of mind, consciousness, awareness, thought, reflection, realization that leads to, and flows from, energy and vitality, and takes a specific shape and form in the world of concrete reality through who-and-how we are here-and-now.

As we cultivate our conscious/mindful association with these eight things, we generate our own harmony, balance, and stability by living a life that is grounded, centered, focused, awake, aware and alive.

And that, is all there is to it.

But. Learning to do it is the tricky part.

And. Doing it is the best trick in the entire Book of Tricks.

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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