The entrance to the shrine

A new painting of mine that can be seen on MY ARTWORK PAGE


Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about limiting beliefs and how so often we just accept them as “REALITY”. Several years ago, I began to experience an effect of my thinking, that I didn’t think was the result of my thinking. It involved the work that I do as a spiritual counselor. I found that a number of clients were either reluctant, or forgot, to pay me. Some said they would and never did, others paid me less than my hourly rate, and still others intimated that it wasn’t spiritual to charge for the work that I did.

This was quite distressing for me, and I began to try to figure out how to deal with it. I decided that I needed to be clearer about expecting payment, and went about formulating a “spiel” that I’d give before each session. Nothing changed. In my frustration at “them” I finally hit my head against my own belief: I struggled with my worth and value as a spiritual counselor. A part of me didn’t feel as though I deserved payment. What I did as “work” seemed so natural to me, that I placed very little value on it, and so this belief was beautifully (I can tell you it didn’t feel beautiful at the time) reflected back to me in the attitude of some of my clients regarding our financial agreement.

It may sound unbelievable to say that once I recognized this, everything changed, but it did. Clients who had not paid in the past began to pay ahead of time. Some people even gave me more than my rate. The “problem” disappeared overnight.

The world, my world, shows me who I am/what I am thinking and believing….always. My “struggles” always arise to show me how I’m limiting myself. Once I see that my thinking (even if the whole world seems to believe the opposite) is the only thing blocking me, I become free….and things on the outside change to reflect this.

Some of my thoughts of freedom are: everything that I need (and desire at my deepest level) is provided, there is nothing to fear, there are no problems, life is Good, God/Spirit is within me and everything seen and unseen, all is unfolding perfectly….

If you’d like to comment with some of your favorite freedom thoughts, or thoughts that remind you of who you truly are, please do!

“When we fight with our failing we ignore the entrance to the shrine itself and wrestle with the guardian, fierce figure, on the side of good.” From David Whyte’s, The Faces at Braga

11 thoughts on “The entrance to the shrine”

  1. Mary, I always get in the way of myself. It’s inevitable. It’s usually because of my belief system which I confess I’m not able to let go of entirely or even by half. There are still few things left in my life which are like hard rocks under my feet; may always be there until I have no more energy left to give them. But I too devalued what I did owning and operating a B&B (which is going into its 24th year). I found it awkward asking people to pay for their rooms; my parents entertained often for business while I was growing up and this just seemed an extension of what my parents had done at home. Early on, however, two ‘city’ couples booked two rooms to attend an upscale evening ‘farm’ party. They came in at noon, slept for the afternoon, got ready for the party, then one couple came downstairs with their overnight bags and said they were leaving and wouldn’t be back overnight. I confess that I didn’t know how to handle it. They left without paying, having used the room and I was left washing the sheets and cleaning the bathroom they’d used. The woman of the other couple lectured me the next morning and said that I should have charged them and asked for their payment. I’m grateful for that experience because I make it very clear now, that the rooms are to be paid for upfront, after the guests have inspected them, I ask that they come to my desk in the front hall and “we’ll take care of the business and get that out of the way”. I devalued the work I was doing, I devalued myself in the process. Standing up for myself has never been all that easy with certain people who seem to reflect my mother’s controlling behaviour of me. I wonder if it’s my nature, which it partially is and the way I was controlled by a parent. If I got out of line with my mother talking back to her she would smack me across the face. That pretty much put paid for me standing up for myself. It’s taken years and therapy to allow me to get to the place where I can comfortably say: I’m not comfortable with this arrangement and……”
    Sandy P in bitterly cold Southern Ontario, Canada

    1. Sandy, I am in awe of you taking care of guests in your Bed and Breakfast for 24 years . . That is a major commitment of love, devotion and sacrifice. I am also struck by your comment, “I’m not comfortable with this arrangement….and, — those few dashes are such precious invitations, at least, for us in the WFF community to embrace you, in the way you are sharing your life with us, and all of us, with those “and’s” that can just be too personal or painful to share, but we sense things after sharing here with each other for four years. Love you Sandy P! and all those who gather here. May your “and’s” which may be too personal or difficult to share, be heard today, by the angels above. Love to all!

  2. Good morning Mary! Thank you for the invitation to pause for a moment and take time to reflect on those beliefs that free us and keep us connected to who we really are! Perfect timing for me this morning. My very first thought about my own freeing beliefs was that I am confident that I can find my way back to my Center (should I wander away) very quickly. And I love that thought because if I do
    begin to feel out of balance, I know that I can return to Home and have ways to get there. And second, the thought that we are only ever responsible for our giving…that the responsibility for the receiving lies with the receiver. How they receive ‘it’ is on them (and on me when I am the receiver!). And third, that God, the Universe, has a plan for each of us and that I can not be a buffer between God and his plan for anyone else. So instead of worrying about others, I’ll hold them in loving thought, imagine them smiling and in a place of well-being, while I am at my best and highest Self. And what used to be worry turns to trusting and knowing energy. And that is the best gift/prayer I can give to another. And it is a soothing gift to myself at the same time. You taught me this one, Mary. And it was one of my early learnings toward a more peaceful and balanced Life. Thank you…as always…for your sharing, your counsel, and your frequent invitations to pause and remember who we really are!
    Peace to all here at WFF…

  3. Thank you Mary, Having a balanced life is a lot harder then it seems and the problem is that as you pointed out we get in the way. I know this to be true as I feel up my life with helping others and then I realize I forgot me. But then as I don’t panic and know that God has it all and as long as I keep in prayer he is my balancer and the desires I have in my life He will bring about so stop panicking and relax bring everything to prayer and expect amazing things to happen. Thanks, Mary!

  4. Dear Mary, thank you for such a wonderful post this morning. One of the thoughts or meditations I use is “God/Divine Love surrounds me, lives within me and guides me always. I give up my worries, questions and struggles to this divine presence and know that I am filled with peace and reassurance and will receive the answers I need always.”

  5. Terrific post, Mary. And some of your posts bring such awesome and open replies from members of our WFF, I feel doubly ‘educated’ when I read them all.
    There isn’t too much I can add, except to say that I have stood in my own way for most of my life and only just began, a couple of years ago, to examine and correct that, thanks in great part to your sharings.
    Blessings to all.

  6. Hi Mary ❤
    It is amazing how messages come to us. Sometimes I feel our hardships and deep questionings give the greatest clarity because we hold onto them longer than we should so when a different view point changes how we see what is before us it creates an answer to a lesson we will not soon forget. For those who feel that payment is negotiable or to be paid in time unless it is worked out ahead of time the payment should be made. This is what you do and your time is just as valuable as anyone else's. When we learn to listen to our heart and believe in the leap of faith nothing will make us falter from knowing who we are and what we can do. By you believing in what you expected to happen for payment you created the answer. Thoughts are energy (brain waves!) Science is now showing how everything works such as brain waves and thoughts. They have shown how dogs can smell subtle emotion changes in humans. On a subconscious level perhaps your clients picked up on your frustration about payments. Which now that you have changed the way you think about it has created quite a change in the way you are being paid. When I was doing some writing last year I wrote a few sentences that stuck with me and make me truly think about the way I "see" things. "If perception is the problem, then perception is also the solution. It truly is all in the perception." No matter how you see it perception paints the picture.

  7. Oh Mary, thank you so much for such a fantastic post! I am at a time in my life where I am questioning beliefs that I have been taught my whole life. I was raised in a very strict pentecostal church by a grandmother who thought just about everything was a sin! I spent the majority of my life thinking I am not worthy, A lot of that is still in my head but I am coming to the realization that God is grace and that He loves me just for me. I constantly battle the unhealthy thoughts roaming around my head but I have found that if I remind myself that this is the best day of my life, the day usually turns around and before I know it I am smiling and truly enjoying “the best day of my life”!

  8. Thank you for this post, Mary. I do get in my own way but posts such as yours remind me of the the beliefs that I know are true, at least for me. And I will remember to step out of my way and allow myself to move forward to my inner greatest and highest self. I feel like I am making a hash out of what I am feeling about this but really – thank you so much for sharing this. And I love the artwork that went with it and was a bit disappointed that it was already sold. It sent out waves of peace to me as I looked at it. 🙂

  9. How awed I am to read this post as I begin my work day. First item on the agenda was to remind two clients their payments are 10 days overdue. Now I’m going to go about it remembering better that I value my work. Thanks, Mary, as always.

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