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February 2014

Qualities of a Great Mentor

By | Daily Routine, Depression, Pranic Healing, service, Spiritual Teachers, Uncategorized | No Comments

What qualities are necessary of a great mentor?

Last weekend I was having a really tough time emotionally. In two days, I probably slept a combined 30 hours with intermittent nightmares. In my awaken state, I was feeling depressed, confused, even suicidal. What the hell was going on?

Because I have consciously created a rock-solid routine, I’m able to spot anomalies that could be derailing me. So in-between moments of slumping depression and debating suicide via jumping out the 2nd-story window head-first, I began journalling.

Too much sugar last night? Nope. My girlfriend’s kids whining? Sort of. That small glass of white wine we received as a gift? Maybe. No response back from a txt I sent my son’s mother? Most likely. Poor sleep the past week? Ok that makes sense.”

Little by little I was connecting the dots from one trigger leading to a stronger trigger, which lead to an even stronger trigger and before I knew it…I had been run over by a gigantic ‘trigger’ snowball flying down the mountain leaving me deflated, despondent and depressed.

Facebook to the rescue.

After two days of my girlfriend asking, “Is there anything I can do to help? What are you feeling right now? Where is this coming from? Should we go to the ER?” And me barely mustering a single-word response, she did what she does best…went onto Facebook for help. She knew the ER, medication, or even coaching was going to help. But she felt her Facebook Friends held the key to my recovery. Previously, she had made a connection with one of my Pranic Healing Masters, who just happened to be online when she sent out the social SOS.

She messaged her explaining the situation and asked if I could receive distant pranic healing immediately. My Master said, “I will start healing him now.”

This all happened without my knowledge. In a couple hours, I was feeling lighter and instead of thoughts of suicide I was having thoughts about the TED Talk I was watching. My girlfriend walked downstairs and said, “I love you very much and Master just gave you a healing.” In that moment, a flood of gratitude and appreciation came over me, bringing me to tears. Thinking of my Master, “She’s always there for me no matter what. And never asks for anything in return.”

I received a Facebook message from my Master a few days later. “How are you doing Christian?”

After a few periods of phone tag, we were able to connect. It had been a year since we last talked. I filled her about my triumphs, which had been many, and then this bizarre weekend of depression. During our talk, she provided insights into how my strengthens and weaknesses could have created this depression and offered suggestions to keep moving me forward in my personal life and my business life of coaching, pranic healing and public speaking.

It seemed as though she was literally reading my inner most beliefs, fears and desires. Its as though she had a copy of my journal in her hands. I’m not talking about a psychic who is really good at ‘cold reading’, I’m talking about someone who knows really knows me deeply and intimately.What a gift to have a mentor like her in my life.

Who is the mentor(s) in your life that you go to when you’re feeling down and out?

I created a list of 10 qualities to be aware of in looking for a great mentor/master/teacher.

In no particular order.

10 Qualities of a Great Mentor:

1. Lives a good life.

Does your potential mentor live a chaotic life of excessive drinking, drugging, laziness, jail time and destroyed relationships at home and abroad? Or does your potential mentor live a life of virtue, health, abundance, influence, respect and service to his community and abroad? In essence, do you want the world he has beyond the shiny objects of his mansion, luxury car or large networth?

2. Does not need you.

A great mentor cannot be bought or corrupted with promises of fame, money or power. His internal state of peace, presence and impartiality is all pervading and indestructible. This is common among the great spiritual teachers like Ramana Maharishi, Eckhart Tolle, Franz Bardon, and MCKS. They have a mission to serve humanity and will do so with or without your assistance. A great mentor does not ‘need’ anything from anyone. 

3. Has a great purpose.

Great mentors have a big calling meant to inspire and/or effect millions of lives. Whether through a product, service, healing or teaching. His motivation is not rooted in more money, more power or more fame, its rooted in service to uplift humanity. A great mentor of mine in Boulder, CO, once said to me when I was an arrogant kid, “Christian, you’re going to realize at some point, life is not just about you, its about service to others. Period.”

4. Been there, done that.

A great mentor has extensive experience of landmine field, knowing where to step and where not to step, without blowing your legs off. His knowledge will accelerate your life by leaps and bounds while saving you years of suffering through lost opportunities, lost money and lost time. A great mentor can see the probable outcome 5 or 10 years down the road of a decision you make now. Its your choice to heed that advice or not. I have a 365-Day Calendar on my desk with quotes from my spiritual teacher, Grandmaster Choa Kok Sui. Today’s quote says, “The Guru can show the way, but you must walk the Path. You must transform yourself.” Meaning your mentor can guide you but you are ultimately responsible for your effectiveness, or lack thereof, to correctly understand and apply that guidance. 

5. Knows when his help is needed.

My greatest mentors have always been there for me without me asking. In my darkest times, I have mysteriously received a phone call, txt message or visitation by my mentors with a soothing message to guide, heal or encourage me. My mentors have, literally and metaphorically, saved my life.

6. Lives a life of mastery.

A great mentor will not only have mastery in their profession, whether as an architect, attorney, real estate investor, medical doctor, or Master Pranic Healer but also mastery of his emotional life. Any anger expressed is purposeful and clearly directed, like a parent yelling at child before placing their hand on a hot stove or running across a busy street. He is the master, not the slave, of his emotions and skillfully uses them to move his great purpose forward.

7. Practices humility.

Humility is the ability to accurately see your strengths and weaknesses then act accordingly. A great mentor is humble in realizing he does not have all the answers but is always seeking higher levels of mastery of resources and knowledge to move his great purpose forward. You will directly benefit from your mentor because of his generosity to share his experience, resources and knowledge with you.

8. Sees and cultivates your greatness.

My greatest mentors have always held the space that I can be, do and have anything I want because I am worthy and capable. A great mentor does not blow smoke up your ass but helps you realize no one is cut from a different cloth. If that person is realizing his potential, I too, can realize mine. A great mentor recognizes that I, like all others, is a being of divine Light (Intelligence), Love and Power (Will). By expressing these three divine qualities I can realize my greatness.

9. Is patient with you.

Have you ever had to change a babies’ diaper? Do you start screaming at the baby saying, “When are you ever gonna learn to use the toilet! Its really not that hard. I’m so tired of this.” No. You change the baby’s diaper realizing that’s what babies do. Its the nature of a baby, which is different than the nature of a toddler, teenager, adult or elderly. Likewise, a great mentor has unlimited patience for you because he knows you will eventually learn your lesson and once that happens, your world will transform. I have struggled with certain lessons for over a decade (probably lifetimes) but my mentors have continued to help me navigate the subtles and nuances of the lesson knowing that one day, I will grow up and stop crapping in my diaper and use the toilet.

10. Loves you.

Most of all, your greatest mentors love you. His love helps to nourish your soul. In spiritual circles, the Guru-Disciple (mentor-mentee) relationship is the most loving and longest lasting of all relationships because ‘he’ is there to help you evolve into the best version of yourself and eventually, reunite with your Divine Spark from whence you came. It is said, while your parents are with you in this life, your Sat Guru (Main Teacher) is your spiritual parent that has been with you throughout the ages and will remain long after you have left this body. ‘His’ love is unconditional and all pervading. The love of the Sat Guru shines like that of the Sun, whether you choose to pull or open the blinds matters not, the Sun never stops shining.

So where do you go to find a great mentor or even your Sat Guru? Hmm. Great question that I don’t have a step by step answer to…yet I can recommend a book that will provide some clarity and awareness of who is currently mentoring you, check out The Master’s Path. I’m always amazed by great books that contain countless gems are usually the smallest, cheapest and unassuming covers.

I truly hope this helps you on your path to physically connecting with your greatest mentors and even your Sat Guru.

I have been blessed with great mentors in my life and even more importantly, the awareness of their existence. How do I pay back people who have given me priceless teachings, blessings and healings and never asked for anything in return? By paying it forward and continuing the process of becoming a great mentor myself. Yikes, I gotta a long way to go.

Getting off the phone with my Master Pranic Healing teacher, I looked at my notes from our talk and thought, “Wow, I have come so far and still have so much farther to go. Thank you Lord for the assistance. How can I pay this forward?” And then got my laptop out and wrote this article.

With Love.

My Dad’s Battle After the War

By | Depression, Emotional, Habit, Uncategorized | No Comments
After the external battle is over, the internal battle begins.

After the external battle is over, the internal battle begins.

I was recently watching a George Carlin clip on Youtube in which he rails against people who use soft language to hide the truth and pain of a situation. Most notable is the term ‘shell shock’ from World War (WW) 1. Shell shock is defined as, “a reaction to the intensity of the bombardment and fighting that produced a helplessness appearing variously as panic and being scared, or flight, an inability to reason, sleep, walk or talk.”

Carlin states with each new generation, truth and pain become buried under jargon. The condition of shell shock in WW1 morphed into ‘battle fatigue’ that morphed into ‘operation exhaustion’ and by the time Vietnam was happening, the very same condition was called ‘post-traumatic stress disorder’ (PSTD). With each evolution of the condition it became more complex with less humanity. The original pain of the situation became lost in vague jargon.

My dad was a Vietnam Vet. In fact, he served in DaNang during the worst time of the Vietnam War. To this day, I have never heard my dad speak openly to my brothers and me about his experiences during war-time. Only my oldest brother was privy to these experiences. Why so? My brother was in charge of preparing the case against the US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) about the horrors and acts against humanity, that my dad witnessed during war-time. His accounts of these horrors were over 300 pages long. After preparing that case-study, my brother never looked at my dad in the same light again.

This case started because my dad was unable to continue working as a correction officer for the state of MA. My dad’s “inner demons” were rearing their ugly heads again and he was unable to return to work because of doctors’ orders. It put him in the position of having to resign from the state job and apply for disability with the VA. During this time my dad supported himself and the three of us with savings, home equity line of credit and maxing out all of his credit cards. It was the most stressful and often, most dire, time of my family’s life.

After 3 years of battling with the VA and proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that my dad’s condition was caused by inhuman acts of war and not from psychological make-up, the VA relented and awarded my dad 100% disability due to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder caused during war-time.

You might say, “Awesome! Your dad deserves that compensation for the risk he took defending our country. Now he has the time and money to travel, work in the garden or pick up a hobby he’s always been interested in. No more worries about retirement, medical bills or even burial plots. The VA is picking up the tab for all of it.” I originally thought the same thing, little did I know about the iron-claw that PTSD would have on his life.

Benjamin Franklin said, “Many people die at twenty-five and aren’t buried until they are seventy-five.” My dad’s ‘death’ happened when he left the Marine Corps at age 23. His life became a 15-year drunken stupor of eating out of garbage cans, fighting at local bars, working back to back menial, low-paying jobs and black-outs that lasted days. During his misery and pain, he stumbled into a relationship with my mom and had two boys with her. Ten years later, I was the lucky little surprise my parents had after falling out of love and into divorce.

My dad was ‘awarded’ his 100% disability status in 1996. One could imagine the past 18 years being filled with travel, gardening and hobbies but not so. CNN or History Channel play on TV around the clock, he sleeps at all hours of the day and night, eats only processed foods, moves his body very little, and still smokes like a chimney with filter-less Camels. Besides downing chocolate glazed donuts and 12-inch steak and cheese grinders from Papa Ginos, he’s on anti-anxiety, anti-depression, anti-high blood pressure, anti-high cholesterol, and anti-quality of life medications. Why? Simple…medications are free from the VA and popping pills require no change on his part. The pills keep him alive, but not enlivened.

My brothers and I have tried to urge, conj-ole, even threaten him to go out on a date, see a therapist, start juicing, walk around the neighborhood, quit smoking, go on a day trip to the Cape and any number of things that we KNOW will improve his physical and emotional well being. Even a friend blogger, Mans at theHackedMind, suggested the nootropic, aniracetam, which has been shown to help with depression and anxiety. But the old adage, “Nothing happens until someone sells something”, applies to my dad as, “Nothing happens until he sells himself.”

He has to be willing to change.

Its a humbling experience to help complete strangers greatly improve their physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well being with a complete overhaul of poor lifestyle habits yet I’ve been unable to help my dad drink a glass of fresh carrot juice. What I know about habit change and behavior modification, its best to insert a new behavior immediately after an established habit…the challenge is, my father has almost no established habits. Not in sleep, not in eating, not in tv viewing, not in socializing or anything I can think of at the moment. I guess I’m gonna have to look into his micro-habits.

For the record, I love my father with all my heart and he has accomplished some amazing things despite his shortcomings with alcoholism and PTSD. He was able to get his life together enough to be able to accept my two brothers and I to live with him after leaving our mom. He worked 80-hour weeks for years in order to provide food, shelter and a down-payment for a great house in a great town. All those who know my dad respect, admire and adore him because of his tremendous heart and willingness to sacrifice himself for the benefit of his three sons.

For 14 years he was able to keep his emotions under control and work ethic in check long enough to provide my brothers and I with stability. Then in 1993, he could no longer keep it together. The ‘inner demons’ could no longer be silenced, that is when he applied for disability.

My heart goes out to every veteran who has ever served our country. I do not agree with the military/industrial complex and how it sees human beings as machines rather than men. It sickens me how the men and women of power can sacrifice the lives of others to move their own agendas forward. There is nothing sexy, macho or admirable about war. Killing only begets more killing. If that wasn’t the case, we’d have peace. On the flip side, these men and women enter the military under their own free will because the draft is no longer in affect.

While most veterans do not lose their physical lives during a Tour of Duty, countless others have lost everything else in mind, motivation, and meaning, becoming the walking dead waiting to be buried.

I salute you.

With Love.

What is Your Small Toe Doing Right Now?

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holy feet

“Without awareness, there is no inner transformation…” GMCKS

If you are familiar with my background, you know I have spent a lot of time in life with eyes-closed; during meditation retreats, healings and inner reflection. I was always asking, “How did my life end up here?”

My spiritual teacher, Grandmaster Choa Kok Sui, would say, “Without awareness, there is no inner transformation…” Think about that for a minute. If you aren’t aware that you have a drinking problem, how can you stop it? If you aren’t aware of your anger issues, how can you be loving to those around you? If you aren’t aware of your poor eating habits, how can you begin eating a healthier, more nourishing diet?

During many of those meditation retreats, a Master Pranic Healer would ask, “What is your small toe doing right now?” The students would stop to reflect and ask themselves, “Hmm, what IS my right toe doing right now? Its just a little part of my body. How can I be expected to be aware of such a little part? What’s his point? Umm, wait am I even doing this right?”

He would then gleefully shout, “Now you are aware of it!”

You are usually not aware of small things in your life unless those small things become huge sources of tremendous pain and suffering, such as your small right toe getting smashed by a ball-peen hammer. At that point, its about the ONLY thing in the world you are aware of.

What other areas of your life are we very aware of?

A chaotic relationship or break-up? A call from your doctor with positive results of cancer? Maybe the awareness that your business is bust and you must file Chapter 11. Isn’t it interesting that you in order for you to be aware of something it must be huge, scary and at a breaking point?

What would it look like if you were aware of the small things?

That chaotic relationship didn’t happen overnight. There were times when each of you said or did something seemingly small, almost insignificant, yet caused hurt, resentment and suffering to you or your partner. Over time, the love bank was rapidly being depleted without even the smallest deposits of tenderness, sweetness, or appreciation. Awareness of the small could have prevented a break-up and provided a deepening of love.

Your doctor’s ‘call of death’ was not out of the blue for no reason whatsoever. The small things of poor nutrition, poor exercise habits, and from an energetic perspective, the inability to forgive others, lead up to this phone call leaving you surprised. You might say, “How could this be? I have no history of cancer in my family. I’ve been walking a mile everyday for 3-months! This is so unfair!” Awareness of the small could have prevented the ‘call of death’ and provided a legacy of health to model.

How could your business just ‘suddenly’ fold up one day, leaving you emotionally and financially bankrupt? Earnest Hemmingway said, “How do you go bankrupt? Two ways, gradually then suddenly.” Sales had been going down for years blaming the economy, marketplace had been changing blaming fads, company morale had been dropping blaming employee laziness, and innovation had become too risky. Awareness of the small could have prevented a bankruptcy and built a empire.

The signs of right living with relationships, health, business and every other area is all around us. The secret of transformation is the awareness of the small and unseen. Most importantly with the awareness of your thoughts, words, emotions and actions.

Look at your life right now.

Your relationships, health, wealth, place you live in, school you go to, office you work at, and everything else, is the culmination of your thoughts, words, emotions and actions. The degree of your awareness of those aspects determines the quality and quantity.

Be still and be aware. Be aware of how your thoughts, words, emotions and actions create the world around you. Once you aware how these aspects are either causing you suffering and pain or bliss and fulfillment, you can begin your transformation.

A perfect example, was my complete lack of awareness in how sugar affected my emotions, sleep cycles and overall health. Despite being spoken to, yelled at, coaxed, and even pleaded with….my transformation never took place until I became aware of sugar’s effect on me. Once I had the awareness, my life transformed in ways I couldn’t have imagined. Outbursts of anger turned to outbursts of laughter. Restless nights turned to restful nights. Food cravings turned to food contentment. Racing thoughts turned to flowing consciousness.

What’s the ‘sugar’ in your life? What thought(s), emotion(s), word(s) or action(s) are you unaware of that are causing you pain, suffering and misery? Here’s a hint. Look at your life, find the fruit-of-pain and trace it back to the seed-of-inception. You can only harvest what you have planted.

For instance, if you are in a relationship that feels love-less. Ask yourself, “Have I been loving with this person? Have I provided emotional and physical love to this person? Or I have spent time judging, criticizing and withholding my love from this person?” If you plant corn you get corn, not oranges. If you plant tomatoes you get tomatoes, not squash. If you plant love you get love, not hatred. If you plant withholding of love, love is withheld from you, not given to you.

Now here’s the real kicker. You might be saying, “Yeah but I’ve never withheld love from any relationship. What gives?” Whose to say those ‘negative relationship seeds’ weren’t planted by you in another lifetime? This is one explanation for why children suffer. How can a 5 year old child grow up in desolate poverty or be sexually abused or be a prodigy on the piano or drown in swimming pool? As one Master Pranic Healer said, “No suffering is undeserved.”

You are always reaping fruits of seeds you planted either in this lifetime or a previous one. By the law of karma and reincarnation, each of us are born into this life with lessons to learn and negative karma to repay. The family you are born into, the shape of your body, your personality strengths and weaknesses, were developed over lifetimes of planting seeds.

That’s great news!

What this means is that with this greater awareness, you have the power to consciously (rather than accidentally) create your future by planting seeds you desire; seeds of loving relationships, seeds of health, seeds of prosperity, and seeds of whatever else your heart desires.

Happy planting.

With Love.