As is often the case, the Pulse of Spirit this week was born out of a transcription of my words at the Morning Service offered online via Zoom and Facebook from Sunrise Ranch this past Sunday. This week, I noticed I was in high spirits, doing my best to encourage and inspire people to let the fountain of life flow through them. I have sought to preserve the tone of my enthusiastic oratory in this Pulse of Spirit. Please receive the words in the spirit I offer them, born out of my passion that we all live life to the fullest and burst through anything in ourselves that might block that from happening.
The fountain’s flow that comes to us from out of the world and rises within us is opened by gratitude. The flow of the fountain that falls down upon us from its source opens with our enthusiasm.
The fountain of life flows because we stand in its current and delight in it. We welcome the flow of the fountain as it rushes to us, and we lift it up in joy. The fountain flows because of gratitude.
Often, what comes to us from the world, from other people, and even from our own human capacities is challenging, full of difficulty, and even ugly and destructive. What do we do with that? Should we be grateful?
I see people struggling with how to handle such things. Should you really be thankful for them?
Sometimes people say you should be thankful in all things, not necessarily for all things. And perhaps that helps. Moving beyond spiritual aphorisms, what is going on here? What is the truth of the fountain of life and how it flows?
Would you say that within all people, at their core, there is something good and wonderful? I would. I believe that all people are created out of the power of the universe, universal love. As the Bible teaches, humankind is made in the image and likeness of God. Of course, that’s not all that is going on. There is human culture and tendencies that alter and even corrupt the divine blueprint for us all. But the blueprint is there, and the core of universal love is there. How do I know? Because there is no other power for human experience than the power of the universe.
Gratitude is not only the general gratefulness for being alive and present. It is appreciation for the flow of the universe—the fountain of life—that is coming to you now. Yes, it might have elements that are challenging, full of difficulty, and even ugliness and destruction. The art of living in the fountain is finding the clear water of life at the core of what comes to you and receiving that. Anything destructive can be placed on the compost heap of life to be recycled, broken down, and become fertilizer in the future.
The pure flow within the circumstances that come to us is vitalizing, even though the form in which it comes might not be. So gratitude is simply the joy and exhilaration of receiving that flow. It is not the counter-intuitive mental challenge of trying to appreciate the outer form of something ugly and destructive.
Our expression of faith is having gratitude for what comes, however it looks, knowing that inside what comes is something vitalizing. The flow of the fountain of life that comes to us from the world is stimulating and invigorating. It is powerful. However, that flow isn’t meant to stop with us. It flows through us to the larger field of power from whence it came. It joins the larger field of universal love born from the God of the Universe, whose power it is. The flow ascends through us to that larger field. This is the ecstasy of gratitude as the flow of the fountain moves to the headwaters of its origin.
Do you walk around in your local town on the main street or in the subway in the city and see people filled with gratitude and praise for the flow of the fountain of life? My guess is, maybe. But oftentimes, in the world in which we live, it just gets dark and difficult for people because there is not an attitude of exultation in life itself and the flow of the fountain of life. The person doesn’t like the form in which that flow comes to them out of the world. And so they end up rejecting the form, and in the process, rejecting the flow. When that happens, the human body, which is meant to be the fountain of life, becomes like the stone structure of a fountain without any water flowing through it.
If a person is not exalting in the flow of the fountain of life, they are probably doing something else. The common word for it is complaining. They are entering an experience of feeling victimized by the circumstances that contain the flow of the fountain that is returning to them.
Welcoming the flow of the fountain that comes to us, we make ourselves available for the ecstasy of life. We become invigorated and activated at exponentially elevated levels. We experience joy, which is many times more than for a person who lives in victimhood. We have to be available for that ecstasy or go bumping along in life with our fountain running dry. We have to be willing to be in ecstatic gratitude, joy, and praise for life itself and the source of it.
Gratitude opens the flow of the fountain of life. The flow coming to us and ascending accelerates. The creative flow coming into us from above—from the headwaters of the fountain—increases.
There is a word that might be out of fashion: enthusiasm. I am thinking about it because on two occasions within the last week, I had someone say to me, “You are so enthusiastic!” I feel like asking, “And you aren’t?” If you are not enthusiastic about life and its opportunities, if you are not willing to live into the ecstasy of life, then what is happening? A person’s life pattern goes to complaint. Perhaps it doesn’t become a state of clinical depression. But they feel depressed, down, worried, and anxious. I would much rather be in the enthusiasm of the fountain of life.
I looked it up. You may know that the word enthusiasm is from Greek. The origin is simple: en-theos. En simply means “in,” and theos is the Greek word for God. And so, it has to do with being “in God.” My etymology source talks about being possessed by a god, rapt, and in ecstasy. The origin of the word means to be divinely inspired, to have fervor and zeal.
Gratitude brings us into conscious participation in the fountain where there is enthusiasm—where we feel the uplifting current of appreciation, and praise for the source of it all—for God, by whatever name. We experience that reality coming into us and feel enthusiasm. We have the power of the fountain moving in our body and in our entire human experience. We have the zeal to carry forward.
Nothing much gets created without zeal and enthusiasm. Creation occurs when there are elevated levels of ecstasy sustained over time. There is a rhythm to the fountain’s flow, just like there is a rhythm to our heartbeat. So there are certainly times of higher and lower intensity. But the flow never stops when a person has gratitude and enthusiasm, just like the blood never stops flowing as long as there is life in the body.
Gratitude is not work. And neither is enthusiasm. These experiences are not powered by our human soul. They are powered by the source of the fountain. Gratitude and enthusiasm come easily just because we are open to letting the fountain flow.
In some social situations, it is not polite to be enthusiastic. You might disturb other people, particularly if there is a tendency in the group you are hanging out with to just stand around. If everybody is standing around and you are enthusiastic, you are shaking things up. Well, I say, Shake ’em up! Because if you are not willing to be enthusiastic, you start to die in slow increments. If the fountain of life is not allowed to rise up in gratitude, and flow out in a mighty river through you with enthusiasm, it is because you are cutting it off. You are not activated. You are not creating.
I believe we are all here to create. We have great things to do in our life, at whatever age we are. But those great things are never accomplished without enthusiasm.
We might come from a reserved culture that criticizes enthusiasm. So wisdom might demand that we take care not to offend anyone any more than we have to. But that cannot stop our enthusiasm.
Picture a fountain with a great basin or cup filled with water from above. When the cup is filled, it overflows. The human soul is like that great cup. When we are living with gratitude, we are lifting up all that comes to us to the source from which it came. And in that lifting up, we are also opening ourselves to receive the flow from above. We are being anointed with the oil of love on our forehead, preparing us to receive the flow of life. We find that life is pouring down upon us. If you do not turn to the source of the flow with gratitude, you do not get filled. If you turn yourself to face upward like the cup, you become the fountain.
Most fountains do not just take the cup filled with water and dump it out. Water fills the cup to overflowing. And like that cup, we are not meant just to dump out the water of life that enters us. We are not meant to become exhausted and depleted. We are meant to overflow, constantly being filled, continually overflowing, bringing enthusiasm to our world. This is the secret of the fountain and the secret of life and life more abundantly.
Exactly how full is the fountain of life supposed to be? How full is the flow supposed to be from you and me and from us together? And do you think we have a pattern of expectation that is realistic about the possible? I wouldn’t set any limit on it.
A cup cannot overflow if it leaks. So we are not here to be a leaky cup as an individual. We are meant to overflow with what is being given to us—not just to let it leak out by bad habits of expression and behavior.
Altogether, we are not meant to leak. And how does our collective cup leak? Because of the gaps between us created by all the petty little things we might think, say, or do. That is the state of the leaky cup. So if you have got petty things going on, you are participating in the leaky cup. We are not here to be a leaky cup. We are here to be a cup that holds water to overflow. So we are here to lock arms and know a communion of the heart so that we can be a cup that does not leak; so that our collective cup can be full and we can live in joy and overflow, and know the enthusiasm and ecstasy of life.
Do you think the people in your life need the overflowing waters of your fountain? They do.
Do you think this world needs the overflowing waters of our fountain? It does.
There is no question in my mind—or in yours either, I imagine—as to the spiritual needs of the world in which we live. The question is whether we will be a fountain of gratitude and enthusiasm, overflowing with the answer to those needs.
Oh I love this – so important to remember!! Sometimes people say you should be thankful in all things, not necessarily for all things. And perhaps that helps. Moving beyond spiritual aphorisms, what is going on here? What is the truth of the fountain of life and how it flows?
I’m so grateful for the flowing fountain inspiration from everyone here. Thank you! ~ David
My heart overflows with gratitude at everyone’s beautiful words. Let our hearts be purified by the power of Love that flows through us, the Eternal fountain.
Mary Oliver has written a poem called ”Don’t Hesitate”, the final phrase or which is: “Joy is not made to be a crumb”.
I grew up in a culture where it wasn’t cool to be too enthusiastic. Firstly, you might embarrass yourself, and secondly, others – your mates at school. In so-called polite society, it was not deemed appropriate to express too much or to be too opinionated, either. In retrospect, I think this was a sad waste of a natural and youthful inclination to express joy and enthusiasm. It was a mechanism which kept the waters from flowing, bringing stagnation. The world needs vital and creative people who can show their colours. It is time!
Thank you, David, for lifting the lid off. With divine inspiration, we will be spared opening a Pandora’s Box. And, who knows…
Thanks, also, to the interesting and varied comments on this PoS.
Thank you David for your words. Thankfulness is my experiential awareness of the unseen larger design, present or, outdated truths making up the present scenario of factors involving so many different facets before me always, which include the underlying reasons and beliefs of what I hold, and of all the other ones who comprise those facets. This is why things have come about to this present point. My Presence is required is being blasted everyday, (actually for years and years now). This increases exponentially as I ground the Light into every cell releasing outdated material with every breath I take with humility of forgiveness in the natural form of thankfulness.
I concur with this eternal truth, and with the 3 magnificent replies.
Thankfulness is Living. For me thankfulness does not mean just showing gratitute for everyone and everything. It’s abiding in the reality of Love, whereby I also, as a Sovereign Being call my own stuff with love and discipline, and at times call others and allow myself to be called, all out of communion and communication, rather than complaint. Crying and controlled anger release without projection I still learn and apply and encourage others to do so to, as well as transcending fear. Otherwise I could be a thankfulness puppet, showering praise everywhere, yet without doing personal shadow legacy work that clears emotional distress, and allows me to go back to someone and call something without projection. If this is not manifested we do indeed horde resentment and are unhealthy with repressed emotion and possible physical challenges. So for me, there is far more to thankfulness than has been seen, and no doubt far more for me to embody. Thank you, Laurence M
Thank you David, for this weeks captivating, pulsating, thought provoking and fluid enthusiastic overflowing.
It reminds me of one of my favourite places in the world the Chalice Well in Glastonbury. I also adore the symbol of The Vesica, also known as the Vesica Piscis, its symbolised as two circles which form an oval used in mystical art to surround a spiritual figure. The oval represents an opening into the mysteries of higher consciousness through the mother goddess. Yet somehow the symbol reminds me of the flow of life, the chalice being a sacred vessel which holds safe all spiritual knowledge and awakening. The overflow which is the fountain of the everlasting surprise of the awakening of self and the fluid abundance of intelligent life itself and what it brings into being.
I am usually a very enthusiastic being brimming over with new ideas and creativity, I pose this scenario to many who look at me blankly when I say. “aren’t we lucky to be alive in this time”. Is that too enthusiastic ? I feel so lucky to be here in this time experiencing it ALL, watching it flourish, develop, change and be recreated, invented and reinvented. I have all I need at each moment IT IS a never ending flow. I do see the blessings in the negative issues because it makes mankind develop more determinedly and move into something more advanced and more intelligent than before and it’s all happening while I am alive and I can experience it.
If you look back 70 years remember the way our parents lived ? Look at what changes they’ve seen since then, it’s magnificent, this IS the fountain and this is the intelligent life flow we experience in.each sacred drop of the unfolding.
We can talk in the spiritual realms of this incredible theory for hours – yet to be alive now and see the creative imagination of the divine flow unfold before us is like witnessing birth after inventive birth. And in the overflow of that love we can gratefully accept living now as the creative unfolds and continually births from the chalice womb of the divine.
How exciting is that – LIFE is about being in the birth of the unfolding and we must be continually enthusiastic and ecstatic about it otherwise the fluidity will dry up.
Aren’t we here to say bathe me in loving imagination? So I can give birth to was is meant to come.
Throw whatever obstacles life wants to put in my way – yet I will not falter in finding a solution to penetrate those barriers and grow even more profoundly from the mud that may cover me over. Isn’t that how the lotus grows and flourishes? YES. I choose to be enthused, enlightened and as happy as I ever can be because Life is simply glorious when you bathe in the flourish of each overflowing moment. We are all the spiritual figures surrounded by the Vesica it’s not just for Saints Prophets and Mystics it’s surrounding us All, so let’s begin to feel that surround Now. When we realise and become aware of our own Vesicas we are part of it All, and our aura flows like that magical fountain of life itself.
“The fountain of life flows because we stand in its current and delight in it. We welcome the flow of the fountain as it rushes to us, and we lift it up in joy. The fountain flows because of gratitude.”
I can identify with these words, so many possibilities coming my way, so grateful, but it can be overwhelming. Fears of overflowing, out of control, joy and enthusiasm becoming doubt. It seems to me that happens when I set limits on what is realistic about the possible. Enthusiasm and gratitude expands the possibilities.
Thank you once again for opening your fountain of gratitude and joy that we may drink of the water of life freely together this week without paying a penny.
In the vississitudes of life, one thing remains constant,and that God is good, his love endures forever and his faithfulness to all generations. that is what David is telling us in Psalms 100.
Shout for Joy to othe Lord, all the earth,
Worshiip the lord with gladnness,
Come before him with with joyfull songs…
It is not always easy but there are so many many many times in my life that I have my God turn it around as some one has sang.
Lastly, even in these times of global shaking up we are going through, I make my own personal choice to open up my fountain of gratitude and joy because the joy of the Lord is my strength.
Even wiith lock downs and my face mask covering my mouth, there is a twinklle iin my eyes, as I exerience an innward ecstasy as I walk down the street. Why such a cloud of fear andd sad faces?
I remind myself that -This too shall pass!
I sing to myself the old nursery rhymme – I have Joy like a fountain in my soul.
1 Thess 5;;16-18 is excellent especially in my own mother tongue.
Rejoice always,pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.
In these trying times of lock downs and face masks