We learn from each and every experience. And some people seem to have more than their fair share of difficult ones. Perhaps these souls have chosen a path with difficult terrain in order to accelerate their own learning—or to help others. For all we know, those who have accepted difficult roles as victims of war, disability, or disease, have done so in order to awaken compassion and humanity on a global scale.
Once we begin to view things from the soul’s perspective, our suffering lessens. But to get to that point, some of us will experience some arduous times, aptly referred to as the dark night of the soul. After all, from a soul’s perspective, painful situations are wonderful opportunities for growth and learning. And there is no denying that pain and suffering can be great attention getters, which can lead to higher consciousness.
After making it through the dark night of the soul and bearing the unbearable, the ego goes through a death of sorts. With our egos out of the way, we are finally able to surrender. This is not a will-power issue. Will-power and determination are wonderful traits, but without surrender, they can become stubbornness and attachment. Surrendering is a release. Like a deep exhalation, it’s not about doing; rather, it’s an undoing, a softening, or a letting go. And when we surrender, we’ll begin viewing each experience from the soul’s perspective.
Conceptually, I understand that when we surrender completely,
we will no longer suffer from anything that our incarnation brings.
I doubt I’ll get to that point, at least not in this lifetime.
I have quite a ways to go. Still, I am learning. And on a good
day, I’m able to see all the events in our lives, even the
difficult ones, as acts of grace.
Dream Starters are visualizations which promote relaxation, imagination and well-being as they guide children into the world of dreams.
To prepare for these dream starters, (or visualizations), create a quiet comfortable atmosphere in which your child can relax.
Step One ~ Progressive Relaxation (Tensing & Relaxing Muscle Groups)
Have your child lie down in his bed. Have him lift each arm and leg individually, holding each limb tightly before loosely flopping it down on his bed. Then have him wrinkle his face and hold his eyes tightly closed, before relaxing his face. (Tense each muscle group for at least 5 seconds.)
Step Two ~ Focus on the breath
Have your child get very quiet and watch his own breath.
Step Three ~ Creative Visualization
Now that your child is relaxed, read (or tell) the following visualization. Of course, feel free to modify it according to your child’s age and interests.
The Dream Copter
Tonight, the Dream Maker has sent you a surprise. Outside your bedroom window you see a dream copter.
The dream copter looks a lot like a helicopter, but it is surrounded by swirling, glittery dream dust. The dream copter is a deep shiny blue color and it is decorated with sparkling, silvery stars.
You open the door and climb aboard, settling into the soft, comfortable, driver’s seat.
There is a TV screen on the dashboard, next to the steering wheel. The Dream Maker appears on the screen and she begins talking to you.
“Good evening, (child’s name.) Tonight, I’ve sent my dream copter to take you wherever you want to go.”
On the screen, you see beautiful pictures of enchanted forests, snow covered mountains, beautiful green meadows, parks with enormous playgrounds, castles, planets, stars, and Dream Land.
The Dream Maker’s face comes back on the screen. She asks, “Have you decided where you would like to go?” Take some time to decide. (Pause)
When you tell the dream copter where you want to go, it begins to rise up off the ground.
Looking down from the dream copter, your house looks very small.
You begin flying through the sky. If you’d like, you can steer.
But if you get tired, the dream copter will safely fly you wherever you want to go. You can fly to as many places as you’d like.
When you’re ready, the dream copter will take you back home.