Right now I am completely absorbed by “The Great Work of Your Life: A Guide for the Journey to Your True Callingby Stephen Cope, the  Director of the Institute for Extraordinary Living at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health.

Stephen takes us on a step by step journey through the ancient spiritual text the “Bhagavad Gita” and makes it relevant for our contemporary lives.  He explores the notion of dharma, the inner possibility within every human soul.

It is a perfect, and easy, read if you are feeling a little lost on your journey, if you are asking bigger questions about your life and you wish to explore your true calling.  It might be that you are living fairly close to your dharma but you need minor adjustments to be fully living your life purpose.  Or perhaps you have been living on purpose for many years and now it just doesn’t feel right, your inner knowing is telling you that changes are needed to live your life more fully at this present time.

Every man has a vocation to be someone: but he must understand clearly that in order to fulfil this vocation he can only be one person: himself.” stated Thomas Merton.  This is so true, we each have a unique calling.  We may get influenced by outside opinions such as those from parents, teachers or peers but it is only when we tap into our true calling do we experience true energy, passion and magic.

If you bring forth what is within you it will save you.  If you do not, it will destroy you.  And what precisely is destroyed? Energy is destroyed first.  Those shining eyes.  And then faith. And then hope. And then life itself.”  I am sure we have all experienced both sides of this coin, when we are fully living our dharma we feel alive, we can feel it in our heart, others can see it in our face and they witness “those shining eyes”.   When we are not living our dharma we may feel heavy, stressed, confused, desperate and unhappy.

I think it is comforting to know that at each phase in life we may have a different calling and sometimes we may have several dharmas running at the same time, for example your calling may be musician, parent and community activist.

What steps can you take to start to explore and live your dharma?

Allow yourself time to reflect and to ask questions such as “Why am I here?”, “What is my purpose?”, “What am I being guided or drawn to do?”

Create quiet time and stillness to let your heart and mind speak to you.

You may get lots of answers but over time your truest answers will begin to develop.

Don’t be frightened to try new things, it doesn’t have to be huge scary life changing stuff but taking action can open the door to your true purpose.

Think of the small as large.   All of our actions, however small or large, are important so do not overrate or underrate your dharma.  You will know when it feels comfortable for you at just the correct balance and size.

Trust in your inner knowing!

Here’s the latest recipe which I made for last Saturday’s Yoga Nidra workshop.  A really tasty, healthy snack and as it is raw chocolate they are fairly rich so you do not need too many to enjoy the taste!

We all know how powerful chocolate can be particularly from our intuitive emotional response to it.  Here are a few chocolate facts which further explain our natural response to the pleasure of chocolate…

  • Chocolate contains over 300 chemicals including a vast range of vitamins and minerals (calcium, iron, potassium and magnesium).  It contains phenylethylamine which is released naturally in the body when you fall in love and is also considered to be an aphrodisiac.
  • The smell of chocolate promotes relaxation, it significantly reduces theta activity in the brain which is associated with relaxation.  (Source: International Journal of Psychophysiology, 1998).
  • Chocolate also contains dopamine which is a natural painkiller. Serotonin which is found in chocolate produces feelings of pleasure. Chocolate has over 400 distinct smells.  A rose has only fourteen and an onion just six or seven.
  • A cup of hot cocoa (using pure cocoa powder) has more than double the amount of antioxidants as green tea and four to five times more than black tea. (Source: Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, 2003).

Ingredients:
1 cup of cashews blended until smooth (or you can cheat as I did and buy cashew butter)
2 tablespoons of honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
8 dates (pitted and soaked for at least 4 hours or you may wish to buy chopped dates)
2 tablespoons raw cacao powder (raw chocolate)
1 cup of desiccated coconut for coating

Place all of the ingredients,except for coconut, into a mixer and mix until smooth.  With your hands roll the mixture into small balls.  Then pour the desiccated coconut onto a chopping board and roll the balls in it to top.  Place the balls on a plate and refridgerate until hard.

Tips:
Raw cacao powder and cashew butter can be found at your local health food store.

Make a batch and keep them in the fridge, they make a tasty snack across the week and saves eating too much processed chocolate!

 

 

A huge big thank you to Kimberley Jones for inviting me to write a guest post for her website, Kimberley Jones – Mentoring & Community for Awakening Women.

Click here to read my full guest post and to find out more about my experience of working with Kimberley on her mentoring programme.

Here’s a little bit about Kimberley in her own words:

I’m Kimberley Jones, I’m a highly sensitive, intuitive woman living in a small village in the UK. I work from home following my heart and doing what I love. Right now that involves creating helpful content for my website and making a film based on my own story of awakening.

I help women navigate their awakening process, come out of the ‘spiritual closet’ and step into their purpose.

My intention is to help you make a difference AND make a living by doing what you love and by simply being yourself.”

Visit Kimberley’s website for podcasts, audios, one to one sessions and to find out more about her work.

(Image Kimberley Jones. Copyright Kimberley Jones 2014)