Janet Neal – Will You Look Up? Or down?

Janet’s “vision” while meditating is a good metaphor for all of the decisions we make in life, and the attitude we hold that informs those decisions. Will we look up – and see the possibilities and beauty ahead of us, if only we wish to “go” in that direction? Or will we look down and see only fear and hopelessness?

The World is Going to Hell in a Handbasket – if That’s The Way You Want to Look at It

by Janet Neal

Janet M. Neal
Janet M. Neal

Just when I start to catch my breath from one horrific event, there seems to be another one on its heels.  I really need to stop watching the news…

But this reminds me of a powerful meditation I had a few months back.  I was fairly new to this meditation routine I had embarked upon as a part of a practice of positive self-care, and probably still had some residual doubt.  I think I was looking for reasons to support my unspoken belief that while this was relaxing, I really could be using the time more productively.  All you had to do was to glance at my to do list and you’d see the logic of that statement.

Anyway, I had settled in for my daily decompression (or nap, somedays) and, being a very visual person, soon was presented with a scene that was far from the relaxation I was anticipating.  I was standing on the edge of a cliff, my toes dangling precipitously.  My heart is pounding now as I remember it!  I was looking down into this abyss and I literally started to sweat, my heart racing.  If I had doubts about meditation in the past, this was about to send me running away from it!  Just when I was about to open my eyes and bolt, I heard a voice say “Look up.”


Here I was about to fall over the edge and now I’m hearing things?  Again, this calm voice said “Look up.”  And, since the alternative of this vision didn’t meet my needs, I did.  And what I saw was the most amazing vista.  It was a beautiful scene of mountains and valleys, of sunrise and scenes that truly warmed my heart.  I realized that here was my lesson:  I could either choose to keep looking at the doom and gloom, or change my perspective.

Yes, there is a dearth of bad news and energy out there.  But there is good, and the potential for even more, if we choose to look for it.  It’s up to you – where are you looking today?

Janet Neal is the author of Soul in Control: Reflections of a Reformed Superwoman, and is a panelist on the Take Action / Make It Happen workshop at Women At Woodstock 2013.

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