Welcome to 99 – a journey
My name is Andrew Chirch, and over the next 9 minutes or so, I invite you to slow down and invest in yourself.
This is part refuge, part invitation to do more exploration, and you are my honored guest.
To get started, let’s take a minute to fully arrive. Here. Now.
In a moment, I’m going to invite you to take 2 breaths together with me so we can both settle into this experience.
Ready? From way down in your belly, let’s inhale for a count of 4, hold for 3, then exhale for 7.
Inhale 2 3 4
Hold 2 3
Exhale 2 3 4 5 6 7
Today’s inspiration is The Majestic and Supreme within everything.
What happens when we come face to face with majesty? Majesty is kind of a museum-piece of word, isn’t it? I mean, when was the last time you used it at lunch with a friend or at the water cooler?
“Larry, the artichokes on that veggie pizza were majestic, don’t you think?”
Can’t you just picture Larry walking away holding his pizza?
Merriam Webster Dictionary says that Majesty is these two things:
1: sovereign power, authority, or dignity (as-in “Your Majesty” – when you’re chatting with The Queen Mum)
2: greatness or splendor of quality or character
Now I just asked “What happens when you come face to face with Majesty? and I’d be willing to bet that one of two things happen. You either stop dead in your tracks, unable to do anything but be rapt and overwhelmed – like a once in a lifetime sunset, or a musical performance that took you someplace else.
You dismiss it, shut it down, and turn on your heel & walk away – unable or unwilling to see it.
If you are like me, the first example, where you feel a sense of awe is special because it happens so rarely.
But what if it didn’t have to be that way? I mean, I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but where I live, the sun rises and sets once a day. Is it only beautiful once?
I recently saw an interview with the Hindu Mystic Sadhguru who said, “The most important and amazing thing to realize is that in spite of the odds, YOU are alive. Think of it… this morning, you woke up. This conscious,awarebeing awoke – again. Do you realize how astounding the odds against such a thing? Think of everything that had to happen in order to form YOU – parents meeting, grandparents, generations of seemingly random chance. The odds against there even being LIFE at all… they’re astounding, and yet, by miracle or chance, here we are, here YOU are – this sovereign being has a name, and a story and lives in relationship with how many others. I mean, come on… there’s really no way this is possible!
Is that not majesty?
In that interview, Sadhguru was asked, “what’s the one thing I can do to find happiness?” to which he answered, set your alarm to go off every hour, and when it rings, stop and think – “I’M ALIVE!”
When you wake up in the morning, take a moment to think, a hundred and fifty thousand people died last night – it’s true – that many people die each day… a hundred and fifty thousand people died last night, and I will too, but right now, I’m Alive! Think of the people around you – your family, your friends, me…. all will die, but right now, at this moment – they’re ALIVE!
Begin to see through the haze that surrounds you and recognize the Majesty of the moment – of every moment.
What if we all treated each other with that kind of respect and deference, taking sheer joy in the fact that we are alive?
That is the positive side of majesty, but there is another side.
Rather than celebrate and recognize majesty in the everyday, we lock it away as if it’s fine porcelain or jewelry – reserved for a select few —only to be experienced on the rarest occasions by common folks like us. We disavow the majesty that lives inside of us – and in each and every being in the universe, and we make it a stranger. So much so, that the thought of it seems foreign and uncomfortable to us.
This, my friend, cheapens what it means to be human.
I may not know your story, but I don’t have to know the details to know that you have suffered. You may be suffering right now. You’ve struggled and missed the mark and done things you may regret.
Too many of us stop there – at the places we fall short.
But don’t cheat this experience. We don’t get to ignore half of what it means to be human. WE – both of us, are called to remember that where there is pain, there is also majesty. Where there is suffering, there is also the Most Supreme. Where the earth is scarred by our wasteful actions, the Sun also rises. Beauty persists. Majesty cannot and will not be defeated.
It’s only for us to witness, or to ignore.
Which will you do?
As for me, I promise I’ll miss the mark. I will get distracted and forget to witness the majesty all around me. But I’ll try again. You can too. Here’s how: I’m going to set my alarm to ring every hour tomorrow while I’m awake. Every time it rings, I’m going to stop what I’m doing, and for ten or twenty seconds, I’m going to focus on just how amazing it is that I’m alive, in spite of all the odds. I invite you to do the same. I would love to hear your thoughts, what you did, how did it affect you? How can we all live into deeper appreciation of the Majesty all around us?
Let’s end our time by taking 2 breaths together once again.
We’ll breathe in for 7, hold for 3, exhale for 4.
Inhale 2 3 4 5 6 7
Hold 2 3
Exhale 2 3 4
Inhale 2 3 4 5 6 7
Hold 2 3
Exhale 2 3 4
Go out into the world in peace and have courage
Hold on to what is good.
Return to no person evil for evil.
Strengthen the fainthearted
Support the weak.
Help the suffering.
Honor all beings – including yourself.
For more about 99, including how this is inspired by – but not part of – the teachings of Islam, listen to our introduction episode or head to prolificate.com/99