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TAO/MITAKUWE OYAS'IN  Vol. 25 (April-May Issue 2010)  


From Denean:  First Requirement for a Minimalist Life (Putting Yourself First is the True Path to Selflessness)

This Issue's Featured Song: "Path of Beauty"

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First Requirement for a Minimalist Life

(Putting Yourself First is the True Path to Selflessness)

Over the past few months I have been seriously contemplating and moving toward a more minimalist life.  What's that?  Leo Babauta of Zen Habits describes it this way:


"It's one that is stripped of the unnecessary, to make room for that which gives you joy.  It's a removal of clutter in all its forms leaving you with peace and freedom and lightness.  A minimalist eschews the mindset of more, of acquiring and consuming and shopping, of bigger is better, of the burden of stuff.  A minimalist instead embraces the beauty of less, the aesthetic of spareness, a life of contentedness in what we need and what makes us truly happy.  A minimalist realizes that acquiring stuff doesn't make us happy.  That earning more and having more are meaningless.  That filling your life with busy-ness and freneticism isn't desirable, but something to be avoided."


The Tao Te Ching agrees: “Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”- Lao Tzu



Minimalism is first of all about relationship...everything from relationship with your possessions to all the other relationships in your life.  But first and most importantly it magnifies your relationship with yourself.  This is what comes forth in a big way when you start down this path.


I am not interested in "ism's" for their own sake. My view of minimalism as a "way" rather than a rigid practice...a way that has a harmonious synergy with the Tao.


Now I must admit, when I look around at my possesions,  I am a far cry from being minimal just yet.  I found out very quickly that this must be treated as a process and a journey.  The correct approach is to adopt the mindset of minimalism, and then allow the natural unfoldment in its manifestation in your material world. Otherwise you can end up feeling quite frustrated with the process.  More on this in a future issue.  For the moment let's talk about minimalism in relationships and commitments...  Living a minimalist life is more than just reducing physical clutter.  Its about reducing clutter in activities, commitments and overweighted schedules that can leave us stressed out and totally overwhelmed.


On this note I was re-evaluating some of my own commitments. Sometimes we may have commitments to people or organizations that we truly believe in, but do these commitments bring balance to our lives?  My own re-evaluation caused me to look at another question: "Am I doing it for me or for them...and who should I be doing it for?" Many times we have deep seated beliefs that say doing something for ourselves is "selfish".  But guess what...if you don't do it first because it's something you really want to do and second to help the other person, you are throwing yourself away!


If we want enduring relationships in our lives that truly bring us joy, then we must first get the relationship with ourselves right. It is only by being true to ourselves that we can give from a place of wholeness.  If you don't put yourself first, you will end up resenting the other person or situation for taking too much from you.  You will be coming from a place of feeling deprived, empty and used.  Not good!  From this paradigm, you don't have enough to give and what you are giving begrudgingly, is taking from you. On the other hand, if you take care of yourself first, you  will be coming from a place of fullness. By putting yourself first, you will find that when you do give, it comes from a place of joy and wholeness and will fill you with a sense of  satisfaction and well-being.


There is much talk about selflessness which is a good thing in it's true meaning, but many times the missing piece (and peace!) in our understanding is that to be self-less you must first have a self!  If you are constantly throwing yourself away then the effect is "nobody's home".  In personal relationships, the place we tend to do this the most, our partner would eventually lose interest because in effect nobody's there!  The irony here is the pun on the word "selfless" in this case.


These patterns of losing ourselves to others can happen in a way that is sometimes difficult for us to get in touch with. We may think that the small, insignificant actions with a subtle attitude of "oh, just this once" are not harmful.  Then we just continue to repeat this pattern of behavior to the point that we are no longer thinking about it....we just do it.  There's an old Chinese saying that goes to the effect of "too small to be felt, yet cumulatively, too large to be ignored." One day all those little actions of throwing ourselves away come up to be dealt with by the cumulative effect they have on our lives.  You see, it's structural and not about a particular event.   It has become "how we do relationship" and if we want to get right with ourselves, we have to correct it.

Get rid of the guilt!


Now in the steps of setting the very boundaries that need to be set in order to put yourself first, the first thing that will surface is the guilt. Get rid of it!  There are some wonderful tools that may help with that.  EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) is awesome.  Simply put, EFT is a series of tapping on certain points on the body to help release and clear negative emotions. It is important to understand however that EFT is a tool, not a spiritual practice.


(To learn more about EFT you can go to  Since EFT's founder, Gary Craig has announced his retirement, the emofree website will only be available for a few more months.  There are many other wonderful EFT websites and practitioners available however.)



Because such a change in yourself can be the catylist for a series of major changes in your life and your relationships, I would highly recommend revisiting the following issues of Tao/Mitakuwe Oyas'in for additional help:


TAO/MITAKUWE OYAS'IN VOL 1   (What is Faith?)

TAO/MITAKUWE OYAS'IN VOL 2   (Keys to Forgiveness Part 1)

TAO/MITAKUWE OYAS'IN VOL 3    (Keys to Forgiveness Part 2)

Whether you are interested in a path of minimalism or not, the importance of putting yourself first remains the same whatever path you are on.   As well, clearing the clutter of too many commitments and activities will surely bring some balance to your life!


The following will be our Affirmation Prayer.

Find some quiet time to create inner “sacred space” for yourself.     

Soft music can help…Breath of Angels,  perhaps, if you already have it.   

Calm your mind, relax your body, and connect your being to God as you understand it.

I encourage you to daily read this slowly, speaking it out loud if you can. 

Allow spaces of silence between each phrase of affirmation, accepting with

humility and faith that the word you speak is taking place now.


Affirmation Prayer

I am...(pause)

Be still...(pause)

and know...(pause)

(just breathe for a moment and focus only on your breath)

In this moment I align with my Source. (breathe)

In this moment I know no separation.

As I focus on the beat of my own heart,

I experience the breath of life flowing through me.

It is here in this oneness that I align with the clarity of the Truth of my being.

In this stillness I see and I know...

Yet, even though in Truth I am one with all things,

I also understand that I am an individualized expression of God.

As such, in my physical form I need boundaries.

My boundaries are what define me as this individualized expression.

I affirm now the clarity I need to be right in my relationship with myself.

This clarity fills me with Light.

In every relationship in my life, be it person, place or thing, I know what is right and correct for me

and I act with ease as I align my manifest world with this truth.

In doing so, I experience order, peace and balance as all of my

relationships flow in synergistic haromony with life!

It is so!


Mitakuwe Oyas'in


This Issue Featuring:

From  Fire Prayer  Fire Prayer CD by Denean 

This song will be available for listening until the next newsletter issue

(approx. June 1st, 2010)

"Path of Beauty" has always remained one of my favorites.  In line with the message of this newsletter, when we walk the path of beauty with ourselves, learning how to truly love ourselves appropriately, the judgments of both ourselves and our relations will fall away.  What I always loved about the Fire Prayer album was getting people to sing along and become a part of the music.  That was the intention in its creation and continues to be.  I don't know what I could say about this song that would add to it's message, so I just invite you to sing along as you listen!




I will walk the path of beauty

Light forever shining

Healing power of love flow through me

To the hearts of humankind.

It is time to live in peace

Mind and hearts wide open

Piercing through the veil of darkness

To the light of heaven.

Time to lay aside the judgment

Of each other's duty

In the walk that we must make

May we find the path of beauty.

Oh, we must learn to live in peace

Selfless love's compassion

Looking only for the goodness

In each other's actions.


Tag: May you walk the path of beauty

Light forever shining

Healing power of love is flowing

Through the hearts of humankind.

To read the "Fire Prayer" story click here.


Mitakuwe Oyas'in


© Denean / Sacred Earth Music, BMI

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