Contributing Writer for Wake Up World
Especially after surviving the apocalypse that was supposed to befall us on December 21st, congratulations for making it through another year! Regardless of how you spent this year and whether or not you kept your last year’s resolutions, it’s no small miracle simply to be alive. Take a moment, feel this gratitude well up in your heart….just to be here.
The rest of this article is about what to do with the gift of being alive. It is not so much about resolution as it is revolution. Revolution as radical, loving transformation, as another trip around the sun, as working together for juicier lives. I am encouraging you to feel out what a New Year really means to you, to ask you to feel into what really matters to you, what you love, and what breaks your heart, as the deeper wellsprings of love. Out of this care and passion emerges revolution for evolution—as the lover, the activist in you, that our world so dearly needs.
As many of you know, one of my activist passions is getting rid of GMOs in our food supply. This care grew out of my holistic medical practice, which grew out of my love of nature, which grew out of my love of being alive. Our first medicine is food; it is our baseline for good health. So, I see the perversion and poisoning of our food supply as a fundamental atrocity and insult to the gift of being alive. What is your passionate care to protect, grown out of your appreciation for being alive?
For the next few weeks we will all hear the words “Happy New Year.” We say it ourselves, sometimes with little sincerity, out of obligation. The greeting in fact has become almost as hackneyed as “How are you?” or “Goodnight.” When sacred moments become obligatory and worn out by contrived repetition, they lose their meaning and we lose heartfelt connection to otherwise meaningful moments during which it is easier to join hands in commitment for real change.
How then can we be truly happy in the New Year? How can we make changes for a truly new year? Certainly, not simply by saying “happy new year” over and over. So I invite you to pause with the cliché, close your eyes many times over the next week to feel and think deeply into your heart, into your body for answers. I invite you to consider not so much what you think “happy” must be, but what fulfillment feels like and might look like for you. Let your body-centered images and sensations guide you into this felt-sense imagination.
As more than joy, fulfillment is the result of creatively extending our passion and care into the world, in making a lasting, sustainable difference. Fulfillment is sourced in creativity, earthly love, and in a heart broken open. It is the full expression and offering of your body and mind, heart and soul.
While enjoying this time of year, we can reflect on the places in our lives that don’t quite measure up to our full potential. We know those places in us, and we can make resolutions to change our habits, shortcomings, and not living the life we know we are here to live (I, by the way, will re-read this article to myself as if someone else wrote it). While identifying weaknesses is important for self-growth, inquiry can quickly turn into self-condemnation driven by guilt, old stories, and obligation. Often, however, this is the stagnancy of not knowing how to catalyze renewal from deficiency. One of the most valuable tools we can learn in life is the art of radical transformation, the alchemy of the heart, which I invite you to add to your soul’s tool chest this year.
The “answers” for a fulfilling life don’t often come immediately, or even in literal ways. If they do, they still take a while to effect. The depths of rebirth are found leaning into the instincts of our deep bodies, the images of our shortcomings, the desires of our blood and muscles, the wisdom of our fertile dark places. If we are patient and give these seeds of renewal the time and attention they deserve for having given us all we already have, we can reap the rewards of transformation. This is how gratitude generates more love and benefit for others. It is wintertime, so let us sow these seeds now.
What will be your transformation this year?
Will it be the year you finally let go of the job that has starved your soul for too long?
Will this be the year you harness passion to slice through apathy and denial so your true gifts and courage can infuse your world?
What is ready in you, what part can you no longer hold back?
In the spirit of winter, we can each use the beginning of this year as a good excuse to let go of the numbing comforts that have secretly perpetuated our insecurity. Let us walk out to the edge of our lives and get used to living each day as a matter of life and death, as if death were close, which it always is.
New Year’s revolutions are not, however, just about identifying the places in us that could stand to be renovated and renewed. During these special twilight days we can tap into our genuine gratitude—for true friends, family, the sanctuary of nature, quiet, our strengths and successes, and the good progress happening in our world—to join us to the bounty and positivity always in us ready to grow into more. And this—generating and expressing more grounded love, however paradoxical—is what being human is all about, isn’t it?
Feeling our gratitude for life can inspire us to imagine new ways to expand our existing appreciation for life—to share and generate more beauty, justice, and fulfillment for all. Let’s not stop with all the good we do. Let’s open up to give and receive even more. If you have followed the real news, you know that our world needs all of what we have in us, badly. How will you activate your heart’s endless capacity for gratitude, forgiveness, and beauty? What will you choose to fight for this year, grown out of your gratitude for the gift of being alive?
As we create the sacred space to increase our gifts and thanksgiving, as well as soberly assess those that need an overhaul, we may find it easier to genuinely wish others a happy new year. Likely, this greeting will come from the same place we contacted in ourselves to find our own answers for more fulfillment, aliveness, and gratitude. Rather than the drone of the same old limp words, the new tone in our voice can instead ring the hearts of those we greet, in the spirit of fulfillment.
So Happy New Year to YOU, fellow Earth-being, may you fulfill and be fulfilled by it.
I invite you to cultivate and generate the gritty love we need to fight back the plunderers of our Earth and to rejuvenate your nature-adoring soul with grace, dignity, and wisdom. Sink in, feel the place where “Yes” rises in you. How does it want to express itself; is it the best you have to offer to the world? What juicy, amazing projects can you initiate this year? Soak in it, set your sights, ride your storm of fire—bust this new year open, flood it with your full self, to make it last into the next. Blessings for life, and what we give back to it.
The Nourish Practice
Jack Adam Weber’s “The Nourish Practice” is an easy, guided meditation-Qi Gong practice in radical gratitude and self-love. It is an Earth-based, body-centered practice — at once physiological and mythological — that is deeply relaxing and replenishing, especially for modern-day burn-out syndrome, and requires little physical effort.
The Nourish Practice “resets your nervous system” and fosters a rich inner life. You can purchase The Nourish Practice as a CD or Digital Download here.
Previous articles by Jack Adam Weber:
- Relationships: The Costs of Staying When We Should Leave
- Sex, Love and Attachment
- Emotional Work
- Choosing a Partner – How to Avoid Relationship Suicide
- Re-Thinking Love: Why Our Hearts Must Also Be Minded
- Spirituality – Reality Check
- 11 Crucial Tips for Better Digestive Health
- Shadow Work: Becoming a Sustainable Light Worker (Part 1)
- Oneness in Action: The GMO Eradication Movement
- After the Hurricane: Lessons from the Heart of Nature
- Relationships: How They Can Make Us Happier
- Heartbreak – Loving Ourselves Through Difficult Times
About the author:
Jack Adam Weber, L.Ac. is a Chinese medicine physician, author, celebrated poet, organic farmer, and activist for body-centered spirituality. His books, artwork, and provocative poems can be found at his website PoeticHealing.com. He is also the creator of The Nourish Practice, an Earth-based rejuvenation meditation. Weber is available by phone for medical consultations and life-coaching.