By Theresa Puskar –
Oak Lawn, IL – March 26th, 2017
“Hospitality is making your guests feel at home, even when you wish they were.” – Unknown
I had to laugh when I read the quote above. It defines true hospitality. I recently had an opportunity to visit the Journey to Wholeness Center in Oak Lawn, and deeply felt such hospitality. From the moment I entered this healing oasis until my final goodbye, I felt a powerful sense of connectedness. In fact, as I was leaving, the last words that the owner, Kimberly Davis uttered were, “Please come again. You are always welcomed!” While one can view this statement as a trite farewell greeting, when Kimberly said it, she really meant it!
“We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves.” – Dalai Lama XIV
The two events I attended were about gaining a greater sense of peace. Noting my recent feelings of unrest, I felt drawn to them. I have recently experienced a growing anxiety within myself, and among many of my fellow community members regarding the polarity of our current politics. Frankly, I have been perplexed by the push-pull of my own emotions and subsequent actions in response to it all. While I don’t know what the answer is, I know that what I have been doing has not been working. I feel a growing sense of anger, anxiety and hopelessness, as I constantly listen to the radio throughout the day, and engage in the Facebook battles that besiege my computer screen.
“Learning to distance yourself from the negativity is one of the greatest lessons to achieve inner peace.” – Roy T. Bennett
For the past year, I have been making a very conscious attempt to distance myself from negativity. Attending these workshops was another successful step in that direction. The first was a free meditation session with Julia Knickerbocker. A seasoned Reiki practitioner, Julia was a master at setting and holding space. The meditative journey she guided us through was very profound. While I don’t remember the specifics, I recall experiencing something new. While I was conscious of the journey, I was also suspended in an altered state. There was a sense of a “pink bubble” that surrounded me. I felt like I was in a parallel “other” place at the same time Julia guided me. By the end of the meditation, I felt a wonderful sense of peace, contentment, and wellbeing.
“Each one of us has to find peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.” – Mahatma Gandhi
The more I meditate, the clearer it becomes that inner peace is a choice I can make in each passing moment. Along with Julia’s meditation, Kim Plesha offered us tangible “peace” tools in her workshop. She began by emphasizing the importance of creating boundaries. This concept is something with which I have struggled. We all know energy drainers. While most of them are not conscious of their actions, they do so all the same. Many spiritual seekers are empaths by nature, and as such, are energetic sponges. Thus, it is important to avoid absorbing the lower frequency energy of others. On the other hand, there is the theory that if you build a wall, the enemy will come. Thus, if I build a wall and focus my energy on fear of being drained, I may attract such individuals into my life. So, where does one draw the line?
“Never respond to an angry person with a fiery comeback, even if he deserves it… Don’t allow his anger to become your anger.” – Bohdi Sanders
One of the things that Kim emphasized was that the current political upheaval is a catalyst for change. Last summer I viewed a YouTube video by metaphysical teacher and speaker, Matt Kahn. He provided a very powerful and different perspective on the election. After viewing his talk, while meditating, I got an insight that was very powerful. If there is cancer in the body, but it is deep within and not seen, it can be difficult to detect, thus not easy to heal. When a cancer manifests as an adhesion on the surface of the body, it is visible, and because of this, it can be dealt with. Perhaps the current unrest in America is a manifestation of what has been hidden, and is a catalyst towards higher consciousness and greater healing.
“Nothing can disturb your peace of mind unless you allow it to.” – Roy T Bennett
Another tool that Kim suggested was to shift from “doing” to “being”. The premise being that focusing our energies more on being still, over getting anxious and angry, can better assist us in moving forward. This brought up another point of concern in my current political struggles; I note that when I constantly follow and engage in the media battles throughout the day, my energy becomes depleted, and I often feel discouraged and even hopeless. In response, I have changed my behavior. I listen to the news once a day, and I do not read or engage in the political bantering. At the same time, I think it is important that we take the action we are called to, so that we can be the change that we want to see.
“I’ve made peace with myself. Good for you. That’s the hardest war of all to win. Didn’t say I won. Just stopped fighting.” – Joe Abercrombie
Full clarity came to me in Kim’s final exercises. She suggested that we focus daily on strengthening our auras through the use of visualizations, sounding healings, and Epsom salt baths. She often calls on the strength and support of Archangel Michael, and stated, “When you can’t hear, go to your heart and listen from within it.” In that moment, I realized that I often get caught in the ramblings of my brain. By integrating the suggestions, and following the guidance of my heart, I can continue to raise my energy while focusing on co-creating a more conscious world. As Eckhart Tolle so aptly shared, “Pleasure is always derived from something outside of you, whereas joy arises from within.” While life’s pleasures come and go, I opt for cultivating more joy in my life.
To learn more about the Journey to Wholeness Center, you can call 708-634-3664, or log onto journeytowholeness.org.
Please come and see me in my new show, BEAUTY, BOLLYWOOD AND BEYOND on May 16, at 7:30 pm. in Chicago. Free workshop included. RSVP by May 1st & see info at theresapuskar.com.
Theresa Puskar, our All About Town contributor, is a writer, trainer, speaker, minister, and inspirational audiobook producer. She is the author of The Terri Series – seven children’s books that focus on bullying, honoring diversity, celebrating creativity, non-judgment of emotions, finding alternatives to technology-based entertainment, discovering a non-judgmental God, and overcoming fears. She has also recorded a powerful experiential audio program, How to De-Clutter Your Mind and Live a Heart-Centered Life. To place an order or learn more about her ministry, you can visit her website, theresapuskar.com.