I Have Given Everything All the Meaning It Has for Me

closeup-of-a-buddha-statue-picture-id143174943 I Have Given Everything All the Meaning It Has for Me
I have just bought a Buddha wood carving, I’m told from a temple in Thailand. I am thrilled with the depth he brings to the room. I love the faint color of pink on him, rubbing off with years. It’s funny. When I see this picture through my mother’s eyes it looks like a beat up worn wooden board with an image, not really attractive, of someone else’s God. Like ours wasn’t good enough? “  Why on earth would you hang that in your living room?  Wouldn’t you like a landscape?” says my mother in my head.
I can’t help but think of A Course in Miracles quote:  “I give everything all the meaning it has for me.” My mother is right. This is old wood that would burn well in a fire.  I am right, too, the compassion and presence I feel emanating from this carving is palpable. For me, this image represents freedom and compassion in the face of all circumstances. Everything has the meaning I give it.

This isn’t just semantics by the way. This is the ticket for freedom. This is the free pass out of hell. This is the key to the candy store and ten bucks in your pocket. Because you are the meaning maker. You have a consciousness that infiltrates everything in your world. In Practicing the Presence, author and mystic Joel Goldsmith says, “Every issue of life is determined not by external conditions and things, but by our consciousness. For example, the body, in and of itself, has no power, no intelligence, and is not responsible for its actions. A hand left to itself would remain right where it is forever and forever. There must be something to move it and that something we call “I.” That “I” determines how this hand will be used.”  I find this truth infinitely freeing.

What does it really mean? It means I’m not bummed out because I don’t have a certain amount of money, a lover’s warm caresses, health, fame, the right house, pants size, or smart phone. I am upset because of the meaning I have given to this. A Course in Miracles teaches that Spirit’s meaning or interpretations are always ones that bring peace. Everything else is untrue. Everything else is a lie, a misperception, a grubby urban rumor, a weed or cancer of the mind. You have the power right now to decide where you are in life. You have the power to remember that all form arises because of choices and you can always make new choices. You have the power to realize that you do not need to be limited or defined or demeaned by any circumstance and that it’s a given, that any thought that causes fear does not serve or honor you. That means it isn’t true.
You are the one who gives the meaning to everything in your life. You can look at transition as a failure and a travesty and as clear evidence that you will never ever turn out right and own a flat screen T.V. like everyone else. You could look at it as an adventure, a dharma, a blip on the map of the shining terrain of eternity, a turning point, a beginning, an altar on which you place your life in reverence to the one God that rocks your world. It’s up to you. Take your magic wand. Take the magic baton. Become the one who chooses to use consciousness in a way that blesses every circumstance and person, including and especially yourself. Use the powers you’ve been given. Do not roll around on the sea, tossed by every wind. Claim your infinity, your creativity, and your dignity. See with vision or you are not seeing at all. This is what my mother or others may not realize when they look at this new/old Buddha on my wall. I am remembering the power of my consciousness to turn everything into sweetness, peace, and light. I am beholding a vista that has no limits. I am seeing a landscape.

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