A Conscious Approach to the Beatitudes
The First Beatitude
Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
The meaning of the word "poor" in Greek means one who has nothing and is completely empty.
To have nothing and to be completely empty speaks to the embodiment of stillness. To be willing to receive the gifts of the soul. To lay a foundation of depth and knowledge of self so as to receive the kingdom of heaven.
This blessing offers a potent affirmation to living a life based in serving the path of inner truth and allowing worldly needs to be provided by deeply listening to what we know inside when we are still, present and willing to surrender into our most awakened self.
Providing materially for ourselves, for our families and serving the deep and righteous voice within will often appear at odds with each other. This is not the case unless the choices we are making to provide for our material needs lay in opposition to what is consciously true. Often the biggest challenge new students face when they start working with me is the amount of rest I encourage and how the Four Forms of Rest initially feel like insurmountable mountains in a world filled with anxious, worried and frustrated action. Humanity fills itself with such fruitless activity due to an absence of presence. A willingness to slow down, rest, and be quiet radically changes this picture and opens the door to receive the first blessing or Beatitude.
The Second Beatitude
Blessed are they who mourn,
for they shall be comforted.
The mourning spoken of is the willingness to grieve and let go of the weights that habituated patterns have hold on us without presence. Mourning allows us to forgive ourselves for our past and current non-present choices. To consciously let go into the depths of our being so we can be comforted by whole experience of self within the soul.
To let go into the Tears of the Soul is a noble and deeply personal path intrinsic to the healing and growth journey yet largely misunderstood in our hyper-rational world where a willingness to grieve is often seen as a weakness. The Tears of the Soul is a deep and potent experience known to consciousness acolytes as a powerful and life-expanding opportunity to let go of the old habituated pattern of life. In the midst of such phases we don't have an explanation for what we grieve yet know it is a necessary part of healing and growing. It is a willingness to grieve and let go of the ghosts we carry within that are expressions of past and future blocking us from the freedom of the present.
The Third Beatitude
Blessed are the meek,
for they shall possess the earth.
The Greek word for meek, praus, was used to refer to domesticated animals. The word does not refer to a wild, unruly animal; it refers to a strong and powerful horse or an ox that was trained and disciplined.
The notion of meekness is largely misunderstood and poorly translated into our modern world. The translation is better seen as those who serve the will of the soul. Free-will exists in relation to a particular yet broad inquiry all humans can make when making any decision: will I honor the call of the soul or personal truth or will I choose instead to fall back into non-present or habituated patterns.
The possession of the earth speaks directly to the gift derived from the practice of surrender into the soul. The possession of the earth is more metaphor than literal. It is a direct reference to the experience of being grounded in one's deepest self; experiencing the expansive and deep knowing of self.
Often human beings are faced with the challenge: do I listen to what I know is true for me or do I follow the path of habit and do what is at the surface easiest, more comfortable, more accepted. This quandary varies person to person, dependent upon the nature of the habituated patterns they are facing in this life. A human being dealing with chronic frustration, dragging the past with them, will be faced often with the opportunity to let go of past habits and step into the present while another who largely looks forward with anticipation will face the need to see the moment as it exists now. Letting go into the moment, listening deeply into one's truth and surrendering into such righteousness is the blessing of the meek as expressed in the 3rd Beatitude.
The Fourth Beatitude
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for Righteousness,
for they shall be satisfied.
To grasp this Beatitude, one must, as its written, have a deep hunger and call for the truth dwelling deep within one's soul. To be WILLING to let go into righteous truths that will not necessary resonate with those around us. To be WILLING to practice being a righteous being means allowing the opinion of others to be heard and received and at the same time listen and act from what is true within us through the practice of stillness, presence and surrender. There is a peace and calm that comes with acting with righteousness, “for they shall be satisfied”.
The word satisfaction is again another word that in modern translation does not fully express the depth of feeling known within when one experiences the blessing manifest in dwelling in one's righteousness. Too often I read seemingly righteous statements shared by others that are lacking the cultivation of self necessary to carry the fullness of the message. The satisfaction expressed here lies within the stillness, presence and righteousness embodied in these blessings. Blessings all of us can choose to receive in life. Be still, experience emptiness, know the tears of the soul and hunger for righteousness within.
The Fifth Beatitude
Blessed are the merciful,
for they shall obtain mercy.
Mercy is love toward those that are miserable, those that are wretched, and those that need some type of help or assistance.
A key element within the surrender into soul is the willingness to be soft and receptive, to be kind and compassionate. In order to embody mercy in the world, we must begin with ourselves. To show the kindness and compassion with our own imperfect choices by allowing us enough space to be both imperfect yet willing in presence to practice redemption with ourselves and those around us.
The Sixth Beatitude
Blessed are the pure of heart,
for they shall see God.
Psalms 119:9 "How can a believer keep his heart pure? By keeping it according to the word of God".
Pureness of heart arises from the practice of stillness, presence and surrender into soul. To receive the blessing of heart purity lies within the surrender into the will of the soul. To allow the soul to illuminate the heart and allow us to see our most authentic expression of self.
The heart is both a physiologic and energetic manifestation. Yes it pumps and distributes blood but it also it also connects us to a relationship within ourselves that balances the call to righteous truth with the blessing of compassion. To know the moment fully is to cultivate this balance authentically as each human beings journey tilts the scales uniquely and with a distinction that carries its own vibration, potency and beauty.
I hold within myself the deep truth that purity of heart in accordance with the word of God is a living and vibrant expression of the possibility within each and every human being to manifest fully and authentically in righteousness and compassion. This is a practice, an opportunity of the NOW. Not an aspiration but a practice, a choice to give expression with not a moment to spare.
The Seventh Beatitude
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called sons of God.
The peacemaker is an expression that speaks to the embodiment of the path Yeshua led in life and in spirit. It has a multitude of expressions but is in fact rarely embodied, both within and in action, in human form. It is as much a challenge as an invitation or blessing. Are you willing to live fully and authentically by embodying the stillness, presence and surrender into self that are the building blocks of the peacemaker?
The Eighth Beatitude
Blessed are they who suffer persecution for justice sake,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
This blessing is an affirmation to the righteous. Be true at the depths of the soul as a practice in life and one does and will know the deep and lasting experience of redemption, resurrection and ascension into the light of being.
To suffer persecution for justice's sake takes many forms and includes social and political activism necessary in our world. While many forms of persecution fill our news sources and social media outlets, and are included within the blessings intent, a larger picture is worthy of inclusion.
Too often I hear that meditation is not enough. We must take action to change the world. More often than not these words are filled with non-present expressions of anxiety, worry and frustration. What is meant by non-present expressions is that the human being expressing them has not actually discerned the story or narrative from the emotion and the result is reactivity. To discern the narrative from the feeling and actually feel deeply the emotion arising shifts us into presence and the potential for a very different and far more sustained approach to being a change agent. The practice of presence can often put one at odds with the injustices around us and leave us open to persecution from those who will choose to persecute a dissenting voice.