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A formula for spiritual peace anywhere

May 19, 2008 by Lightwaves

momandi.jpgOn a trip to his sister’s wedding in Toronto, Michael McCarthy is delighted to discover that peace is always just one breath away.

I recently visited Toronto for 3 weeks to attend my sister’s wedding. Having left the ashram a few times during my 15 month stay here, I have learned that taking a plan with me can help greatly. I named my recent stratagem the “formula for peace”.

My “formula for peace” was to give myself time and space to feel what was going on in my mind, body and emotions. I wanted to take some time in the morning to practice hatha and continue with a daily Divine Light Invocation practice. This proved to be more difficult than I thought. The city is filled with so many ways to fulfill the countless desires in my mind, let alone the demanding schedule city life seems to impose. Any simple curiosity or distraction can be fulfilled in a few minutes on the internet or on the television. The decision to be with friends who have not made the same spiritual commitments as myself led me into situations that were just as distracting as the evening news. I thought “This is not spiritual living.”

I found out I was wrong. My formula for peace can work anywhere, anytime.

While I may not have kept the most stereotypically spiritual company during my time in the city, I found a well-spring of confidence in how I wanted to relate to people and what I found to be of importance in my life. Relationships to old friends, rather than pulling me into old habits like a victim, provided a chance for me to affirm my position as the creator of my own universe. Faced with films and media I found myself choosing with discernment rather than shunning everything popular culture had to offer. Instead of rejecting situations out of fear, I stepped forward feeling strong and sure of how I want to be in the world. Rather than fearing situations I was in, I found that I wanted to affirm the Light within. The energy I put into resistance was being redirected into affirmative action.

Powerful emotional reactions were disarmed by bringing attention to my breath and allowing myself to feel what was present in the moment. Being aware of repetitive negative thoughts allowed me to use the energy I would normally spend resisting these thoughts on affirming my identity in the Light of awareness.

There were many times when I would forget my formula for peace. However, the sincere effort I made on a daily basis to grow into Light would often sustain me through those forgetful periods, waking me up into consciousness with a little shake of my hand (and sometimes a slap on the face).

I am thankful for the awareness to go looking for Light when it felt like there was none around. I am grateful for the sincerity that carried me through difficult times. I am so appreciative for the ashram, where the support of the Light and community has given me confidence to create the life I truly desire.

What is your formula? What are the areas in your life where resistance and tension lie? How can you invite the Light in?

Doing things that inspire me are helpful. Here are some photos, one of my sister at her wedding and another of my niece Chloe. Family is one thing that has been enriched by my experience at the ashram. Click to see the bigger version.



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  1. Hello Mike,

    I was so touched by your entry about being away. As someone who has just touched the Ashram a couple of times for a few weeks at a time, I see keeping the light as so difficult with the constant distractions of life. That said, as long as I give myself that pinch or slap in the face I remember to go back to the Divine Light Invocation, the Divine Mother Prayer and the various chants that have worked for me so well.

    Like seeing Maureen, I was so happy to see that you were still with the Ashram and wish all of you well. I plan to return during the summer.



    Comment by Sharla Carroll — May 19, 2008 @ 10:12 pm

  2. Hello Micheal,

    Reading your words of wisdom gave me an opportunity to reflect on my ‘formula’. I am living my ideal of being spiritual centered and yes I too ‘slap my face’ after arising from clouds of emotions. When I am lifted I realize it is all part of my ‘formula’ a catalyst shall we say. The light shines brighter.

    Thank you for sharing.


    Comment by Margo — May 20, 2008 @ 3:34 pm

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