Archive for the ‘Tony Lobl’ Category

Your 12 Steps to a Stress-Free Christmas   1 comment

dreamstime_3642401. Start with stillness.  There is always so much to be done before Christmas, so before starting go somewhere quiet to gain a sense of poise.  It might be your greatest gift to family and friends, as well as fellow workers, shoppers and shop assistants.  “Be the calm you want to see!”

2. Let love lead you.  Take opportunities to spread seasonal “peace and goodwill”.  Reordering priorities to do everything with intentional love can bring a sense of calmness and control, allowing you to get everything done more smoothly.

3. Value family and friends.  As you sign, seal and send your Christmas cards (via email or snail-mail) treat each one as an opportunity to value the person you are sending it to.

4. Be kind to yourself and others.  Research shows kindness is good for your health.  So saying sorry, no matter who causes the collision, might be the way to negotiate crowded streets, transport and busy shopping centres.

5. Shop ethically.  “Treat others as you would like to be treated” (the Golden Rule) could translate to “love the Christmas crowds as you would want them to love you.”

6. Embrace spontaneity.  The need to balance work, domestic duties and social activities is always more acute at Christmas time.  Keeping an open mind and making room for flexibility as each day unfolds reduces stress and increases joy.

7. Be grateful.  Scientists are accumulating evidence which verifies what spiritual thinkers would affirm from experience: a gratitude attitude can reduce anxiety and depression.

8. Enjoy yourself.  If you’re full of gratitude and exuding calmness and kindness why shouldn’t you cruise happily towards the kind of Christmas you enjoy?  Appreciate the festive lights.  Share in the growing anticipation of your children.  Meditate on the Christmas story and let the message inspire you.

9. But don’t forget others.  For some reason the season of goodwill seems to bring out the worst in many people’s experience.  Loneliness feels more lonely.  Alcoholism seems to be more obvious.  Domestic tensions can spiral.  Spare a prayer for those in need and, when you can, make a difference in practical ways.  The message of Christmas is that peace and goodwill are good for your health.

10. Peace interludes.  Pausing for moments of mental stillness can make all the difference, even transform your day.  Be honestly aware of your thoughts and when they start going round in circles or racing in a wrong direction steer them back to that place of spiritual poise.  “Hold thought steadfastly to the enduring, the good, and the true, and you will bring these into your experience proportionably to their occupancy of your thoughts.” (Mary Baker Eddy)

11. Forgive even if you can’t forget.  It’s amazing how long family feuds and broken friendships can last if we’re not careful.  The run-up to Christmas offers an opportunity to review and revise our mental list of grievances before they ruin our holiday break or, even worse, our health.  The Mayo Clinic reports that forgiveness can lead you down the path of physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.  We can’t always change others.  But we can change how we think about them and act towards them.

12. Give beyond the gifts.  And finally it’s Christmas day.  Does it need to be religious?  Not necessarily.  But there is a reason to celebrate Jesus.  One way to look at his life is that he showed us how the qualities we choose to express can improve our experience and touch our loved ones and neighbours.

This article is shared by local writer and practitioner of Christian Science, Kay Stroud, who teams with Tony Lobl for this Christmas inspiration. Kay blogs for APN about the relationship between thought, spirituality and health, and trends in that field www.health4thinkers.com

Can we really forgive our deadliest enemies?   Leave a comment

DSCN3472Father, forgive them; … for they know not what they do.

It never ceases to amaze me that in the midst of the physical and emotional agony of the cross, Jesus was able to look at the very people crucifying him and say — and, of course, mean — the hallowed words above.

So how did he do it?

According to Christian Science founder Mary Baker Eddy, a key aspect of Jesus’ Christian practice was his absolute consistency in rising above the surface view of what others were thinking and doing to what God was knowing of them spiritually.

She wrote: “Jesus beheld in Science the perfect man, who appeared to him where sinning mortal man appears to mortals.” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 476)

He “beheld” in this way even those who so unjustly nailed him to that cross.

So what about us? What if we are feeling aghast and fearful at what we rightly see as the barbaric actions of terrorists around the world — from Brussels to Istanbul to Iskanderiyah to Grand-Bassam to Lahore?

Can we actually take up the challenge of accepting that Jesus’ forgiving love on the cross was an example to strive to follow, rather than a show of spiritual strength from another time and place, to be admired from a distance?

Surely, it would be a powerful, healing thing for us to do in the light of the fear and hatred manifesting themselves in such wanton acts of violence, and in some of the public and political reactions to them.

Could the stand Jesus took inspire us, too, to pray to the point where we can glimpse that “perfect man” — the spiritual selfhood that underlies even those driven by mortal hatred to commit such deadly acts of terror?

That’s by no means an easy demand. But it can be done.

A fellow church member took up the challenge to do this during a year of violent confrontation between two political factions in her country. It had led to several fatalities. One night, she saw the political figure she most despised on the news, but this time she glimpsed her profound need to pray until she rose above her hatred and saw him from a more spiritual perspective. And she committed herself to doing just that — however long it took — before she went to sleep that night.

After two hours of humbly and prayerfully seeking a diviner view, she got to the point where she actually felt God’s love for the true individuality of the person she had previously classified as Public Enemy Number One.

Interestingly, the year-long stand-off ended later that same week.

Coincidence?

Perhaps. But then again, perhaps not. Jesus’ forgiveness of his persecutors on the cross was certainly not the end of the crucifixion story. It was a crucial factor in his subsequent victory over death and the grave which is the joy at the heart of the Easter story. It enabled him to maintain that consciousness of divine Love’s infinite allness which was able to achieve the resurrection and lift him still further, beyond the perception of the material senses, in his final ascension that has inspired generations since.

Many of us who follow his teachings today would affirm that we, too, have seen our own more modest victories through yielding to Love’s divine view of ourselves and our neighbours. Doing so has proved powerful enough to heal discord in our families, workplaces and communities.

Is that enough? Or can we contribute something of value to the wider and more lethal manifestations of divisiveness?

That’s not to say society should ignore the crimes committed. Nor does it suggest that justice shouldn’t take it’s course or that we can afford to lessen our efforts at tightening up security.

But the world is also in need of the healing power of Christly forgiveness, to bear on the deeper roots of the divisions within our nations and across borders — divisions that would shred the very fabric of unity and civility which evidence the underlying spiritual oneness of humanity as the sons and daughters of God.

Can we take up the challenge laid down by the Easter example?

This article was contributed by Tony Lobl.  Tony is a full-time Christian Science healer, international speaker and freelance writer.  He has a deep interest in the role spirituality can play in restoring and sustaining health and he writes from that perspective.  You can find more of his articles on his blog, Connecting the Dots Between Spirituality and Well-Being.

The photo above is of sunrise over the Sea of Galilee.

7 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About Mary Baker Eddy   Leave a comment

689px-Public_Domain_Mary_Baker_EddyScience and Health with Key to the Scriptures150 years ago today, a New England woman recovered from an injury expected to be fatal. But she was no ordinary woman. Mary Baker Eddy was a spiritual thinker who for decades had been striving “to trace all physical effects to a mental cause”. Now she had caught a breakthrough glimpse of the idea she came to call “the discovery of Christian Science”.

Benjamin Franklin once said:  “If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing.”

Mary Baker Eddy — transcending the ‘or’ in Franklin’s statement — qualifies on both counts. Eddy certainly lived a life worth writing about.  Her experiences as a healer, public speaker, teacher, author, businesswoman, church founder, innovative theologian and “scientific” thinker, could each be worth a biography in their own right.  And as one of innumerable people who credit her writings with bringing me spiritual insights that have restored my health, I would certainly suggest what she wrote was, is and will continue to be worth reading.

Perhaps that’s why she hasn’t been forgotten!

For instance, she is found alongside Franklin and 98 others in The Atlantic’s list of the “100 Most Influential Americans of All Time”.  And her primary book, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, has been designated by the National Women’s Book Association as one of 75 books written by American women whose words have changed the world.

Click here to read the full text of this article by Tony Lobl where he describes his 7 reasons for finding Mary Baker Eddy a most remarkable and memorable woman.  Tony is a full-time Christian Science healer and a freelance writer on the connection between health and spirituality.

Image of Mary Baker Eddy from Wikimedia Commons.

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