TEXAS DEATH ROW NEWS – Saturday 25th April 2020
“This is the true joy of life: The being up for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clot of ailments and grievances, complaining the world will not devote itself to make you happy”. George Bernard Shaw
The other morning I was listening to one of my favorite morning talk show radio programs and was delighted when Deepak Chopra was a call-in guest and was interviewed. I’m the kind of guy who is always looking for motivation and inspiration to latch on to, and add it to the positive wave of energy I work to maintain and keep moving forward with. Because it’s all too easy to sit in my cell on Texas death row with a “woe is me” mind set, after all, that’s what solitary confinement is used for: to break your spirit and I am never going to allow that to happen.
So Deepak Chopra began to share his wisdom and it was amazing when he began to talk about wholeness. When Deepak was asked to describe what wholeness was, he summed it up wonderfully. He said that wholeness can be described as the apex performance level an athlete reaches when he or she is in “the zone”. Falling in love is also a form of wholeness and the super-conscious state that you can reach during meditation. It is when mind, body and soul merge, shedding all ego and emotion bringing ourselves together again and becoming whole.
I think back to my youth and when my Dad used to talk about his desire to attend church services. Dad would say that this was “his fix”, much like an addict needs a fix to carry on. I more or less understood what he meant, but truly did not understand it until I was well into this incredible journey called life on Texas death row. Because I also went to church services with my family, I know what he was talking about. When we moved to Irving TX, we attended a very large church that had several thousand members and I vividly recall how beautiful the hymn singing was at that big church. When the congregation would sing together you could feel the positive energy lifting up your soul and this energy should actually alter your consciousness. I now understand that when we sing together with thousands of people; this act has the ability to elevate you into a super-conscious state. When you leave church services you feel good, you feel high! That was what Dad was talking about and today I recognize this as another way of becoming whole. As many know, my journey has led me to create a spiritual practice (prayer, meditation and visualization) and through it I am able to go within and bring myself together again, becoming whole, and like Dad said long ago: that’s my fix!
As I sit and think about our current situations regarding the Covid19 issue, including how it’s affecting us on a daily basis, sometimes 24 h a day, 7 days a week, especially if we find ourselves feeling sad and depressed. I think one of the keys to surviving is trying to focus on becoming whole. For better or worse, the current lockdown situation we’re experiencing has given us a chance to slow down and listen, taking time to learn the different lessons the school of life is trying to teach us.
I’m not sure when the stay-at-home order will be lifted and to tell you the truth, worrying about that does me no good because I have zero control over it. What I do have control over is how I live today. I woke up this morning with a goal in mind and it was to live this day to the fullest. Yesterday wasn’t so hot but today is a new beginning and I am determined to make the most of it, and I’m doing just that. This goal also includes me doing my best in taking my thoughts and experiences and putting them down on paper, in essay form with the intention of helping others as they do their best to navigate the current situation. In doing my part to serve others I fill a need and that feels great!
“How is love cultivated? Through two methods. Number 1: Always consider the faults of others, however big, to be insignificant and negligible. Always consider your own faults, however insignificant and negligible, to be big, feel sad and repent sincerely. Through this method, you help yourself not commit error and faults, you also acquire the qualities of brotherliness and forbearance. Number 2: Whatever you do, with yourself or with others, do it remembering God is omnipresent. He sees and hears every word and knows everything you do. Whatever you speak, remember that God hears every word; discriminate between the true and the false, and speak only the truth. Whatever you do, discriminate between the right and wrong and do only the right. Endeavor every moment to live in awareness of the omnipotent Lord” – Baba Sai.
Another great question Deepak Chopra was asked was, “how do we bounce back from this Covid19 situation? His answer was: “Gratitude. By being grateful for our existence combined with the shock of the pandemic, this situation provides us with the chance of taking stock of our lives and self, allowing us to regain our balance and reset our lives viewing all things through a wider view in general. For me, he was preaching to the choir! I am living my whole life in gratitude as much as I can because this is the only way I can keep focused and not let life’s difficulties overwhelm me.
Deepak also said that we spend so much time and energy on ego, the rat race and trying to get ahead and be more and more successful. We have lived so long in this manner and how the pandemic has taken all that away from u. We have now reached the point to where we’re grieving the loss of our “past lives” pre Covid19. In the beginning we felt shock and disbelief. Then denial (can this really be happening here?), anger at the situation (stupid corona-virus – I hate bats!) then frustration and resignation (which forces us to deal with the situation and create coping mechanisms) and finally acceptance. In acceptance we find meaning and gratitude as in: what do we really appreciate in life? THAT!
Deepak Chopra also shared something that really touched me. He said that we play so many roles in life: Dad, son, mom, daughter, etc. that we have lost our true self in the roles and we no longer know who we truly are anymore. We’re lost.
If we can go within ourselves and become whole again using the Covid19 pandemic situation as the impetus to take the destruction of our past lives pre-Covid19 to heart, we can reset and begin a new life post-Covid19. And from this point create a better, kinder, more loving and inclusive world. It is totally and completely up to us, we have 100% control of this phase in our life now, it’s up to us to decide what kind of world we want to live in.
I believe we must have a world that is focused on loving ourselves, each other and the earth more. As I think about this grand opportunity that is before us, it’s a huge challenge. I’ve learned in life that sometimes when we have a huge challenge, the best thing we can do is run straight at it without giving it too much to overwhelm us. Because we all have the strength and courage to prevail. It might feel a bit dicey, even dangerous but this challenge is something we all need to take on. So I encourage you to run towards it from your end and I’ll run at it from my end and we’ll meet in the middle and overcome together! In this way we can and will create a better world, one that’s kinder and more loving than the one we had before.
LOVE – PEACE – HOPE – AND STRONG HEALTH TOO!
Charles D. FLORES #999299
Texas Death Row