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Welcome to my island of sanity and serenity. I'm Sandra Pawula - writer, mindfulness teacher and advocate of ease. I help deep thinking, heart-centered people find greater ease — emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Curious? Read On!

Manifesting or Unfolding?

A Star is Born The Visions Oracle Card From time-to-time, I use The Visions Oracle cards for inspiration, guidance, and direction.

Recently, I received a card called “A Star Is Born”, which said:

“Envision: How have your thoughts and imaginations shaped your surroundings? Take the time to create your own reality on the inner planes, first. Observe Intend Visualize Trust you can manifest your intentions. Let go.”

I immediately thought:  “Why would I want to manifest something other than this perfect present moment in which my karma is unfolding seamlessly before my eyes?  This karma - the fruit of my past actions - if understood correctly - is replete with boundless insight and potential for transformation.”

Isn’t it human nature to always want something different than what is?

Will I trample this moment and attach to creating something I perceive as better, more suitable, and more to my liking?  As soon as I begin wanting something different - improved health, more security, the dissolution of pain, a new gadget, the perfect house, or anything else - I’ve entered into the realm of attachment and grasping, the very source of suffering.  I’m living in the future or motivated by the past.  I’m living on the fuel of hope and fear.

Wouldn’t it be exhilarating to be completely free of hope and fear, attachment and aversion?

Letting Go

In his book The Great Path of Awakening, the great spiritual teacher Jamgon Kongtrul suggests an entirely different approach to living:  letting go.  He shares this aspiration:

“If it’s better for me to be ill, I pray for the blessing of illness. If it’s better for me to recover, I pray for the blessing of recovery. If it’s better for me to die, I pray for the blessing of death.”

Surrender.  Be fully present in this moment.  Isn’t that the ultimate freedom?

Creating Goodness in this Moment

At the same time, we are creators.  If you want to have a happy life, it pays to act judiciously.  Because, as the Buddha said,

“We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world. Speak or act with an impure mind, And trouble will follow you As the wheel follows the ox that draws the cart. We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world. Speak or act with a pure mind, And happiness will follow you As your shadow, unshakeable.”

Everything depends upon how you perceive.  It’s the mind that’s in charge.  Words and actions merely follow suit.  Whatever you think, say, or do has an impact on your own mind and well-being.  And it impacts others as well.

Are You in Charge of Your Mind?

But are you in charge of your mind?  Or is it like a rambunctious monkey leaping from one thought or emotion to the next?

The secret to a positive future is creating goodness in thoughts, words, and deeds in the here and now.  It’s not about hankering after something different or better like a new car or idealized partner.  The great spiritual masters of the past remind us:

“Wealth, possessions, health, happiness and popularity are all the efforts of past positive actions.  If you have accumulated positive actions in the past, all these things will come to you naturally as a result, whether you want them or not.  But without those positive actions, no amount of effort will ever get what you want.  All you will get is what you want least. So when you practice dharma [the spiritual path], rely on the inexhaustible wealth of whatever comes.”

- from The Words of My Perfect Teacher by Patrul Rinpoche

The key to a happy future is practicing goodness right now.

That requires getting hold of your mind in a gentle, humorous, and spacious fashion.  Slowing down and carefully choosing thoughts, words, and actions.  Practicing patience, commitment, and presence.

As your karma unfolds, you are simultaneously creating your future.  It’s not a question of either or.

“If you want to know your past life, look into your present condition;  if you want to know your future life, look at your present actions.” - Padmasambhava

This doesn’t mean I disagree with the Visions Oracle.  I agree our thoughts are very powerful, indeed.  My mind is sometimes like a wild monkey too.  But I know that taming this mind is the essence of transformation.  So, each day I practice - as best I can - creating goodness in this moment - for this moment and the future - while I respect the karma that unfolds simultaneously before me.

Are you a fan of manifesting or unfolding?  What future are you creating through your intentions and actions today?

Image:  ©Omra Fochtamn-Kubby - Omra Art

Thank you for your presence, I know your time is precious!  Don’t forget to sign up for my e-letter and get access to all the free self-development resources (e-books, mini-guides + worksheets) in the Always Well Within Library. May you be happy, well, and safe – always.  With love, Sandra



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