Dennis Merritt Jones has been involved in the human potential movement and the field of spirituality as a minister, teacher, personal coach, and lecturer for more than 25 years. He is the founder and spiritual director of OneSpirit Center for Conscious Living in Simi Valley, California, where he lives. In this lively and varied collection of essays, Jones shares the wisdom of the New Thought movement as it relates to a holistic delight in being. He defines spirituality as "the art and practice of consciously being spiritual." He finds the presence of God in every aspect of our daily lives.
In his second essay, Jones comments on how he was positively affected by a bumper sticker he spotted that proclaimed "We All Live Downstream." What we do, say, and think has a profound impact on those who come after us. You can think about this slogan in terms of taking care of the environment right now so that future generations are able to enjoy the planet in the same way as we are. Or you can think about it in terms of passing on a spirituality to those who come after us. Thinking about our legacy right now lends an authenticity to everything we do.
Jones covers a wide swath of subject matter in these essays including the value of blessings, the importance of community, the rhythm of reality, seeking balance in all things, making the most of obstacles, learning from our mistakes, the power of gratitude, taking a global view, the wisdom of release, seeing yourself as God's seedling, the wonder of it all, giving your personal best, stepping into the mystery of "I don't know," and appreciating the gift.
The most valuable section in the book is a mindfulness practice after each of the readings. Here is a sampler of some of these practices:
• "Invite God's presence into your conversations. See the presence of God in the eyes of the person with whom you are communicating and feel that presence at the center of your own being."
• "You might want to bless your workplace by saying, 'I bless my place of employment and everyone with whom I work, knowing that God's integrity, infinite wisdom, and compassion move through me and all who enter these doors."
• "As you drive around town passing different churches and various places of worship, bless each one and celebrate them in their ability to transport people to the 'top of the mountain.' "
• "If you need to conduct business on a cell phone, do it with a mindfulness of the impact it has on others around you."
• "If you find that others want to offer their opinion of you today, positive or negative, smile and say, 'Thanks for sharing.'
• "If it is negative, let it become as water off a duck's back.
• "If it is positive, silently give credit where credit is due by saying to yourself, 'It is not me, but God within that does the work.' "