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MEDITATION: Creating Peace Journal Q’s

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Day 1
Question 1 of 4
Write down three people with whom you have a deep, genuine connection. For each one, list the qualities that make this a good relationship, such as trust, love, intimacy, warm-hearted friendship, etc.

Question 2 of 4
Looking at your list, describe at least one thing you can do to strengthen these positive qualities in each of the three relationships. What gesture of love or trust or intimacy can you offer from your side?

Question 3 of 4
Now write down the weak links you see in these connections, both major and minor. They could be things like growing apart, not communicating enough, decreased intimacy, or unexpressed resentment. Working from your side, journal about one thing you can do to help repair this disconnect and bring peace to everyone involved. For example, you could start communicating more on the other person’s level or find a gentle way to bring up a resentment so that it can be healed.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 2
Question 1 of 4
Reflecting on how you relate to family, friends, and coworkers, outline three qualities that define successful connection to you. For example: empathy, shared likes and dislikes, similar values, respect, etc. For each of these qualities, reflect upon whether you give other people those same things.

Question 2 of 4
Again thinking about your family, friends, and co-workers, write down the things that really push your buttons and cause a lack of peace and connection. These could be disrespect, controlling behavior, negativity, clinging, etc. Now consider how you, from your side, can overcome this disconnect. Instead of fighting against the qualities you dislike, journal about the positive qualities you can bring out to create a connection, such as listening more, respecting other people’s opinions, or offering appreciation and approval.

Question 3 of 4
Think about someone you’d like to connect with but haven’t yet. Describe a gesture you can make towards them the next time you see them that is comfortable for you and may also bring about a connection. These could be things like lending a helping hand, voicing your appreciation, or simply offering a smile.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 3
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on the idea that all relationships come back to how you relate to yourself. List the following qualities of relationship: respect, trust, appreciation, love, non-judgment, caring, compassion, and honesty. For each quality, how does it apply to you? Do you show yourself respect, trust, compassion, etc.? Put down a plus (+), minus (-) or neutral (0) beside each quality to signify if you feel positive, negative, or neutral about how you show this quality to yourself.

Question 2 of 4
Taking the qualities you put a plus (+) next to, write down one thing you can do today to show this quality to another person.

Question 3 of 4
Taking the negative (-) and neutral (0) qualities, write down one thing you can do today to feel better about this quality. For example, if you feel you haven’t been honest with yourself, journal about what it is you need to own up to and improve. If you feel you don’t care for yourself enough, do something that gives you a sense of wellbeing.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 4
Question 1 of 4
Write down all the things that “bringing in the light” means to you. Take your time and be as thorough as you can. For example, it could mean showing loving kindness, giving to others, being of service, offering appreciation and approval, healing old hurts, being a good friend, showing warmth, etc.

Question 2 of 4
Bring to mind one of your most cherished relationships, and describe your favorite way that person shares their light with you. For example, it could be the way your spouse looks past your shortcomings to love you unconditionally, or when your child shares their pure, wide-eyed view of the world with you.

Question 3 of 4
Now, keeping in mind the way in which that cherished person shares their light with you, think about one relationship in which you experience conflict, discord, or lack of connection. How can you share your light with that person in a similar way? For example, you could try to look past their faults to focus on and draw out their admirable qualities, just as your spouse does with you. Or this could be something as simple as identifying and focusing your energy on one positive aspect of a challenging or negative situation in that relationship.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 5
Question 1 of 4
Think of someone you have a hard time genuinely connecting with, whether among family, friends, or co-workers. This can be a person you have mixed feelings about, whom you avoid, or who irritates you. Doing your best to be objective, write down one positive quality this person has, such as being a good parent to their child, or being a hard worker.

Question 2 of 4
Now, keeping in mind the positive quality this person has, write down one small step you can take to start healing the discord and bring peace to the relationship. For example, you could compliment an irritating coworker’s photo of their child on their desk, or tell a family member with whom you don’t always get along with that you admire their work ethic. Take it slow as you approach creating a genuine connection.

Question 3 of 4
To aid this process, close your eyes and visualize yourself and the person you are disconnected from. Imagine a bond of the pure light of peace drawing you together. Watch as you slowly approach each other. If there is a bump or a negative feeling, sit quietly and let it pass. Don’t force anything, just proceed comfortably for a couple minutes. Now, journal about how this exercise made you feel – less angry, unburdened? Consider repeating this visualization each day, watching the two of you come closer every time. Eventually, imagine facing this person with mutual smiles. Can you actually embrace? That is your goal.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 6
Question 1 of 4
Think of someone you have a hard time genuinely connecting with, whether among family, friends, or co-workers. This can be a person you have mixed feelings about, whom you avoid, or who irritates you. Doing your best to be objective, write down one positive quality this person has, such as being a good parent to their child, or being a hard worker.

Question 2 of 4
Now, keeping in mind the positive quality this person has, write down one small step you can take to start healing the discord and bring peace to the relationship. For example, you could compliment an irritating coworker’s photo of their child on their desk, or tell a family member with whom you don’t always get along with that you admire their work ethic. Take it slow as you approach creating a genuine connection.

Question 3 of 4
To aid this process, close your eyes and visualize yourself and the person you are disconnected from. Imagine a bond of the pure light of peace drawing you together. Watch as you slowly approach each other. If there is a bump or a negative feeling, sit quietly and let it pass. Don’t force anything, just proceed comfortably for a couple minutes. Now, journal about how this exercise made you feel – less angry, unburdened? Consider repeating this visualization each day, watching the two of you come closer every time. Eventually, imagine facing this person with mutual smiles. Can you actually embrace? That is your goal.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 7
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on the idea that disconnect turns into connection whenever there is healing, and that healing occurs in the present moment. Journal about one thing within yourself that you would like to heal. Perhaps it’s a fear of long-term commitment in relationships, or a fear of sharing who you truly are with someone else – perceived flaws and all.

Question 2 of 4
Now, describe where you think this fear might originate from. Perhaps you watched someone you love go through a disheartening divorce, or were criticized as a child for some aspect of your personality that you learned to hide.

Question 3 of 4
Write down what you can actively do to start healing this issue. For example, you could find a confidant you trust, go to support group meetings, gravitate to people who can offer the quality you want to heal, etc.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 8
Question 1 of 4
Thinking about a relationship that you have a genuine desire to improve, reflect on that person and what you believe about them. Write down each belief, positive or negative. For example, you could note that you believe a certain person is driven and passionate, but tends to be hostile. Now, for the negative beliefs, put yourself in the other person’s shoes and give their version of themselves. For example, would they agree they are hostile? If so, what might they say is the reason? If they would disagree, is denial at work on their end or are you perhaps over-reacting?

Question 2 of 4
With the same relationship, write down the things you typically say when you feel resistance, encounter a problem, or have a disagreement. Do you tend to blame, get angry, balk, show more tolerance than you feel, try to put the other person down? Look at the pattern of what you keep repeating and ask yourself how effective your words have been. Journal about other possible ways to talk in these situations.

Question 3 of 4
Finally, look at what you tend to do when a relationship hits a bump. Do you put your foot down, nag until you get your own way, guilt trip the other person, give in too easily, go along to get along, act like a people-pleaser, hold a grudge, forgive and forget? Look at your patterns and write about how effective or ineffective they have been. Then describe some alternative behaviors could you try.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 9
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on one static relationship in your life, with someone you feel comfortable around and who doesn’t push your buttons. To improve this relationship, write down something you can do today that gives it positive reinforcement, such as showing you care, you are listening, you are here to be trusted, you don’t judge, etc.

Question 2 of 4
Now reflect on one dynamic relationship in your life, with a person who helps you to grow but can also make you feel challenged, exposed, or vulnerable. What is the next step of evolution you want to take with this person? Write down simple words like more honesty, more openness, more intimacy, more trust. Visualize yourself discussing this with that person, and describe in your journal the best possible desired outcome from the conversation. When you feel comfortable, consider actually having this conversation.

Question 3 of 4
Reflect on the most evolutionary relationship in your life, the one that has led to the most inner growth and self-awareness. Journal about ways you could put more time and attention on this relationship. If such a relationship doesn’t exist for you right now, set the intention to find one by writing down the traits you would most desire in this person. With this intention in mind, keep your eyes open for that person who fits your idea of a companion in your next stage of growth.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 10
Question 1 of 4
Describe what intimacy means to you. You can include physical or sexual intimacy or not—it’s up to you. But expand your thinking to other kinds of intimacy, such as being completely honest, opening up about your fears and insecurities, sharing your dreams, being willing to show vulnerability, asking to be loved, etc. Now journal about your feelings related to intimacy – is it scary, is it something you desire?

Question 2 of 4
For each aspect of intimacy you described, write down at least one person you can share it with. Looking at your list, what types of intimacy are not being fulfilled? Journal about where could you go to seek more fulfillment, not by stepping away from a relationship but by expanding it or adding other connections.

Question 3 of 4
How can you be more intimate with your true self? Write down the kind of person you most want to be. List qualities that belong to the true self: loving, compassionate, understanding, inspired, creative, evolved, awake, etc. Sitting quietly, go inside and ask your true self to bring these qualities to you and show you how to expand on them. Then throughout the day, look for opportunities to express at least one quality you want to personify.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 11
Question 1 of 4
Take any relationship and consider how it feels as a back-and-forth. Who is giving or taking, listening or being listened to, appreciating or being appreciated, being supportive or needy? If you detect a strong imbalance, be specific in your journal about what is going on. When you feel comfortable, consider talking to the other person about bringing things back into balance.

Question 2 of 4
Consider the dynamics of connecting and disconnecting. Take any relationship and write down three things that make you feel strongly connected to that person and three things that make you feel disconnected. Things like religion, politics, sex, and manners can be strong connectors or strong disconnectors. The same is true of emotions. Righteous anger can be a connector while random hostility is a disconnector. Looking at your list, reflect on how you could potentially talk to the other person about both the connections and disconnections that are occurring regularly.

Question 3 of 4
Journal about what behavior in another person draws you in but ultimately has a negative effect on you. For example, you could be excited by people with drama in their lives, but find that drama usually develops between you two when you become too involved with that person. Now, journal about any times where you managed to be detached – were the results more positive? Healthy detachment develops gradually and needs to be reinforced by remembering the times when detachment worked out better than being too involved.Question 4 of 4Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 12
Question 1 of 4
Reflecting on what you really need from your relationships, write down your three most important needs, such as to be loved, to be understood, to be intimate, to feel supported, to reach agreement, to be at peace, to not be criticized, to be appreciated, to share creativity, etc. Describe how you feel when these needs are met. How do you know when they are not being met?

Question 2 of 4
With a good sense of what you need, bring to mind the key relationships in your life, including family, friends, and co-workers. Write down which ones are realistic candidates for helping you fill a particular need. Be thoughtful and consider one need at a time. When you are finished, journal about a few ways you can ask for your need to be fulfilled by each person.

Question 3 of 4
Now do the opposite. Take the needs you have written down and match them with the people who realistically will never fulfill them. This is not about blame. Be thoughtful and consider that you can’t ask someone for what they don’t have to give. Now jot down some of the reasons why they are not able to fill those needs, so you have a clear understanding of the situation. Once you see where each person stands, forgive and release each person from the thing you won’t ask from them again, while at the same time knowing they can be asked to fulfill other needs. Nobody can be everything to you. Knowing this, you can be at peace.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 13
Question 1 of 4
Bringing to mind five of your most important relationships, write down the ideal roles you want to play in each of them. Every relationship calls for different roles, such as guide, teacher, lover, protector, mentor, healer, supporter, parent, challenger, creative partner, etc. Be specific and tailor the roles that suit each relationship best. With your ideal role in mind for each relationship, journal about how you can play your part the best way you know how.

Question 2 of 4
Reflect on the roles you are currently playing that are not productive, in which you meet resistance, disagreement, and disconnect. Do this for each relationship, using the list above. For example, you may be ill-suited to try to teach, mentor, or act like a parent to your boss. Even though each role is productive when it fits, it can be inappropriate where it doesn’t fit. Once you are aware of your unproductive roles, write down a few ideas of what you can do to stop playing them.

Question 3 of 4
For any relationship in which you are uncertain about the roles you play or in which you find yourself getting mixed signals, list two roles you enjoy playing in this relationship, two roles you feel are necessary whether you like them or not, and two roles the other person seems to need, but is sending mixed messages about. When you feel comfortable, consider sitting down and discussing these roles candidly with the other person – always take the attitude of listening and not judging how they respond.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 14
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on a relationship in which the other person has a quality or qualities you truly dislike or disapprove of. Use one-word adjectives to describe this, such as haughty, stubborn, arrogant, insincere, dishonest, controlling, victimized, domineering. Now, without judgment or blame, look within and journal about the possibility that you are talking about something in yourself that is very hard to admit to. How those qualities manifest may be different in each of you, so use your true self to evaluate how these traits show up within yourself.

Question 2 of 4
Without blaming yourself, list ways you can be more aware in recognizing your blind spots. Next to each negative adjective write “forgiveness,” and sitting with your eyes closed, forgive the other person and yourself at the same time. How did it feel when you did this? If you aren’t sure, practice this a few times and tune in to any changes you experience. If your feelings are deeply negative, don’t reach for false forgiveness. Just say, “From now on, I will be aware of this without judgment.” This is an exercise you can do any time your buttons are pushed.

Question 3 of 4
Write down situations that repeatedly turn out badly or leave you frustrated in a relationship. For example, fighting over money, feeling stressed or pushed around, feeling unappreciated, not being shown respect, etc. Now reflect on how to turn this into a win-win situation for yourself. This means that you adopt the viewpoint that you are being given the perfect opportunity to heal something in yourself; therefore, you are grateful for this opportunity rather than resentful and filled with blame. Make self-healing your priority. Journal about some steps you can take to toward healing each of these issues, such as finding your own peace, learning how to be centered, walking away from negative encounters, stop trying to change the other person, or seeking professional advice or therapy.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 15
Question 1 of 4
Write down three positive beliefs or values that really appeal to you, such as a belief in loving kindness, compassion, service, creativity, spirituality, personal growth, etc. For each one, list one action that will increase this belief in your world today.

Question 2 of 4
Now reflect on and write down negative beliefs and attitudes you have allowed yourself to connect to, such as endorsing us-versus-them thinking, blame, stereotyping, angry politics, religious intolerance, etc. What feelings do you experience when you engage in these negative beliefs? How does it feel when you become aware of them and choose not to participate in their propagation? During your day, consider looking for opportunities not to join in when such beliefs are expressed and walking away when someone fosters them.

Question 3 of 4
Reflect on the three “S” words and how they apply to you: Seva is giving yourself in service, Sadhana is walking your spiritual path, and Satsang is sharing the truth in a group of the like-minded. Write down your attitudes toward each of these and how they impact your life right now. Which one is the most appealing to you as a way to achieve inner growth?

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 16
Question 1 of 4
Think about the ways that Seva, or service, is being extended to you by others. Journal about those who have sacrificed to serve you. What was their attitude? Examples can come from any part of your world, from immediate family to social services to those who sacrifice for their country and the common good. Which of these are the most positive in your mind?

Question 2 of 4
Now consider how you can be part of the same positive service you have benefitted from. How can you give back, even in small ways, to experience the personal benefit that comes from being of service? These could be charitable and volunteer work, helping the needy, assisting with outreach to the homeless, mentoring poor and disadvantaged children, etc.

Question 3 of 4
Journal about one selfless thing you’ve done in the past that made you feel very good inside because you gave of yourself, reinforcing this joy of giving back to others. As you move through your day, consider how you can be of service again – any instance of “Let me help” will do. What are a few places that immediately come to mind where you can be of assistance?

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 17
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on your path in life from the inside out. What influences have been the most effective in expanding your awareness? Write down the three most important, such as an inspiring friend or family member, uplifting literature, a spiritual guide, a mentor, a situation where you acquired any of the qualities of the true self, such a love, peace, creativity, compassion, personal evolution, etc. Now journal about new ways to increase that inspiration.

Question 2 of 4
Now think about the opposite, reflecting on the people and situations that have caused your awareness to contract. These would be instances of fear, self-doubt, inner conflict, betrayal, frustration, and disappointment. Write down the three most difficult influences, then describe one step you can take today to turn contraction into expansion, meaning that what you gain by making a change is greater than what you give up. This could be increased inner calm, decreased stress, a stronger sense of self, etc.

Question 3 of 4
The ideal at every stage of the path is to be at peace with yourself in the present moment. Write down your state of peace right now, listing the positive things that contribute to it and the negative factors that create lack of peace. Journal about how you can increase the peace in your life and decrease conflict.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 18
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on the people you regularly spend time with. Write down the three who bring the most positivity to your life, ideally including someone who inspires you at a deep level. Send gratitude to these people and describe in your journal one way you can make your interactions even more positive and uplifting with each of them.

Question 2 of 4
Write about a person with whom you feel a spiritual connection. This can be someone in your personal life or a figure from the world’s spiritual and wisdom traditions, such as the Buddha or Mother Teresa. Describe what it would take to become even more inspired by them, for example meditating on their inspiring values, following their example, becoming more immersed in the literature and scriptures that inspire you, etc.

Question 3 of 4
Reflect on a group event that you participated in where you felt uplifted and energized afterwards. It may have been a church service, a family reunion, or a neighborhood block party. Write about what you contributed to the group, and what you got back in return. What are some ways that you can see yourself doing this again soon?

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 19
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on the world at large and its discord, divisions, and us-versus-them attitudes. List the three or four instances that regularly make you angry and upset, such as war, religious intolerance, or political issues. Now, next to each of these instances, write one thing you can do personally to help bring healing. Remember that peace begins within. For example, if you are upset by religious intolerance, you can practice non-judgment and acceptance when someone expresses their beliefs to you.

Question 2 of 4
Think of a person in your life who is creating obstacles, resistance, or negative feelings. Write down all the things that you see are wrong in your relationship with them. For each issue – without blaming yourself or the other person – journal about what would be the best outcome that would satisfy both of you. Sitting quietly, envision this outcome. See both of you becoming happy with the outcome. Know that starting today, you can take small steps to achieve this list of outcomes, acting as the change agent who can accomplish the goal through expanded consciousness.

Question 3 of 4
Journal about the emotional debt you are holding in your relationships, which means any resentment, anger, hurt feelings, blame, guilt, or inner conflict you still feel. Sit with your eyes closed and visualize a situation that brings up a negative emotion you are holding. See yourself and the other person as clearly as you can; feel the emotion that comes up. Now write out and then say to yourself, “I’m not that person anymore.” Starting today, any time the negative emotion returns, you can take a moment to repeat this mantra, which helps to free up emotional debt. In truth you aren’t that person who reacted in the past and you no longer have to carry emotional debts. Journal about how your life would be different by not carrying emotional baggage.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 20
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on your state of awareness. In your journal, give yourself a grade from one to ten on each of the following qualities: peace, enjoyment, inner calm, and sense of wellbeing. Don’t judge your grade or try to manipulate it. Just do the exercise as objectively as possible, simply based on where you are at this moment. Wherever you gave yourself a low score, write down next to it what lessons you can apply from this Meditation Experience to improve your grade.

Question 2 of 4
Reflect on how to shift your motivation in the direction of being inspired. Inspiration is the greatest and most lasting motivator. But oftentimes pressure is mistaken for motivation, for example when people are driven by a sense of duty, daily demands on time, money, work, promotions, family obligations, self-criticism, the need to succeed, guilt, habit, etc. Journal about how these current forms of pressure masquerading as motivation manifest in your life.

Question 3 of 4
Now, for each of these current forms of pressure, list a deeper inspiration you can use to replace it, such as love, compassion, intelligence, creativity, truth, beauty, evolution, strength, wisdom, and peace. What would this look like? For instance, instead of feeling like you have to try to be nice to your difficult brother-in-law at family gatherings simply so your spouse doesn’t get upset with you, look at your next meeting as an opportunity. Use it to discover something meaningful about his life that you can connect with at a heart level, regardless of the differences you may have on the surface.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 21
Question 1 of 4
Reflect on your willingness to replace non-love with love – both within yourself and with others. Observe and journal about the feelings that come up when you say, “I deserve my love.” These can be positive or negative feelings; just let them be whatever they are without judgment. Describe one thing you can do today to show yourself the love you deserve, such as cooking yourself a delicious, healthy meal with your favorite foods or spending time in your favorite place.

Question 2 of 4
When you have love for yourself, it expands like a ripple to everyone you meet. As a second part of the exercise, visualize any person that comes to mind, whether in your personal life or in the outside world. Observe the feelings that come up when you say, “_______ deserves my love.” Sit and watch the feeling rise and fall. Journal about your feelings on each person before proceeding to the next. When you are finished, go back through your list and for each person say in a quiet inner voice, “I send the healing of love. I give this love freely, without conditions.” How did this make you feel? Were you able to send love easily, or did you feel some hesitation?

Question 3 of 4
Finally, visualize your community, then your country, and lastly the world. Journal about what comes up when you say, “My community/country/world deserves my love.” What are your feelings about the state each of these are in? Where do you see that healing is needed? By beginning the spread of love, you become a unit of peace consciousness, affirming your role as a healer.

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

Day 22
Question 1 of 4
Even a single person has the power to be a conscious agent of change in the world by living from their true self. Sit quietly and write down any of these values of the true self that deeply resonate with you: love, compassion, intelligence, creativity, truth, beauty, evolution, strength, wisdom, peace. Now, journal about how you can adopt the role of being a conscious agent by putting three of these values into action this week. For example, if you value compassion, you could do something thoughtful for a friend who is going through a difficult time. Or if you value beauty, you could plant flowers in your front garden for everyone walking by to enjoy.

Question 2 of 4
On the other side, reflect on the traits that make you feel separate, such as fear, anxiety, insecurity, doubt, inner conflict, resentment, feeling unsafe, or negative feedback among family, friends, and co-workers. Write down one of these factors, and then write the full statement, “I let go of ____. It is time for it to go. This isn’t part of the world I want to live in.” Sit quietly and repeat this statement softly to yourself three times. When you are finished, pay attention to how you feel inside your own body. Did anything shift for you? Journal about how releasing negativity makes you feel.

Question 3 of 4
Reflect on today’s lesson of how you improve your world each day through the effortless influence of your peaceful heart. Imagine peace as a ripple that begins with you and flows out to impact the entire world. What would that look like? For example, assisting a neighbor in carrying heavy groceries could inspire them to help someone else and so on. If everyone chose to live this way today, how do you envision the world to be different?

Question 4 of 4
Use this space to reflect further on your experience today.

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