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The Importance of Good Self-Care

 

There are so many demands made on Bahá’ís at this time in history, when the needs of the Faith are so great and the workers so few.  Many people try to do it all, burn out, and then become inactive.  Let’s look at some ways to avoid this.

Moderation:

Baha’u’llah tells us we need to have moderation at all times, and not to overstep its bounds:

In all circumstances they should conduct themselves with moderation. (Bahá’u’lláh, Lights of Guidance, p. 294)

Overstep not the bounds of moderation. (Bahá’u’lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 235)

When our lives are out of balance, we won’t be able to exert a beneficial influence on the world.

Whatsoever passeth beyond the limits of moderation will cease to exert a beneficial influence. (Bahá’u’lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 216)

Rest:

Taking care of your health is the best means to enable you to serve the Faith:

You should not neglect your health, but consider it the means which enables you to serve. It—the body—is like a horse which carries the personality and spirit, and as such should be well cared for so it can do its work! You should certainly safeguard your nerves, and force yourself to take time, and not only for prayer meditation, but for real rest and relaxation.  (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 296)

Time to rest is essential or you will become weak and powerless and unable to work:

I understand you have been ill and obliged to rest; never mind, from time to time rest is essential, otherwise, like unto ‘Abdu’l-Bahá from excessive toil you will become weak and powerless and unable to work. Therefore rest a few days, it does not matter. I hope that you will be under the care and protection of the Blessed Beauty.  (Amatu’l-Bahá Ruhiyyih Khanúm, The Guardian of the Bahá’í Faith, from a tablet to Shoghi Effendi written by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá)

What did ‘Abdu’l-Bahá do?  Sometimes he hid from others while he recuperated!

‘Abdu’l-Bahá moved, on the 27th, to the hotel in Rue Lauriston where He had stayed before. He was very tired, and needed a few days’ rest before people learned where He resided.  (H.M. Balyuzi, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá – The Centre of the Covenant, p. 393)

Sleep

Shoghi Effendi suggests that most of us need a minimum of 8 hours sleep each night; and tells us we should protect our health by sleeping enough:

Regarding your question: there are very few people who can get along without eight hours sleep. If you are not one of those, you should protect your health by sleeping enough. The Guardian himself finds that it impairs his working capacity if he does not try and get a minimum of seven or eight hours.  (Shoghi Effendi, Compilation of Compilations, V I, p. 459-488)

When we sleep, it should be to rest the body so we can be better teachers and servants, and when we orient ourselves in this way, the confirmations of the Holy Spirit will surely reach us, we will be able to withstand all who inhabit the earth:

If he sleep, it should not be for pleasure, but to rest the body in order to do better, to speak better, to explain more beautifully, to serve the servants of God and to prove the truths. When he remains awake, he should seek to be attentive, serve the Cause of God and sacrifice his own stations for those of God. When he attains to this station, the confirmations of the Holy Spirit will surely reach him, and man with this power can withstand all who inhabit the earth.  (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Bahá’í World Faith, p. 384)

We Can’t Do Everything:

This is a faith of universal participation – everyone has a part to play; and one person can’t do it all:

A unity in diversity of actions is called for, a condition in which different individuals will concentrate on different activities, appreciating the salutary effect of the aggregate on the growth and development of the Faith, because each person cannot do everything and all persons cannot do the same thing. This understanding is important to the maturity which, by the many demands being made upon it, the community is being forced to attain.  (The Universal House of Justice, A Wider Horizon, Selected Letters 1983-1992, p. 80)

Conclusion:

‘Abdu’l-Bahá asked us to consider the human body as an example, and this was absolutely key to my understanding that the advent of the Most Great Peace was not on my shoulders alone.

In the same way consider the body of man. It must be composed of different organs, parts and members. Human beauty and perfection require the existence of the ear, the eye, the brain and even that of the nails and hair; if man were all brain, eyes or ears, it would be equivalent to imperfection. So the absence of hair, eyelashes, teeth and nails would be an absolute defect, though in comparison with the eye they are without feeling, and in this resemble the mineral and plant; but their absence in the body of man is necessarily faulty and displeasing.  (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions, p. 129)

I came to understand that I was just a big toenail; not the whole body.  I didn’t have to feel badly because I couldn’t see or walk, any more than the knee would expect to see; or the ear expect to walk.  But if I didn’t do my job as big toenail to the best of my ability, the whole body would suffer.

What body part best describes you?  Post your comments here:

Physical Treatments for Disease

 

This is part eight of an eleven part series on the Baha’i Perspective on Disease.   In Part 1,  we looked at how I got interested in this topic and looked at some quotes on prevention of disease.  In Part 2, we looked at the reasons for disease.  In Part 3, we looked at the physical cause of disease, in Part 4 we looked at the spiritual causes, in Part 5 we looked at the effects of disease, in Part 6 we looked at the attitudes we want to strive for, when we are diseased, in Part 7 we looked at the spiritual treatments for disease.

Use of Doctors:

In the Bahá’í Teachings it is made quite clear that when one is ill, one should seek the best available medical advice. This naturally leaves a person free to choose what they consider good in medical opinion.  (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 284)

According to the explicit decree of Bahá’u’lláh one must not turn aside from the advice of a competent doctor. It is imperative to consult one even if the patient himself be a well-known and eminent physician. In short, the point is that you should maintain your health by consulting a highly-skilled physician.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 155)

It is incumbent upon everyone to seek medical treatment and to follow the doctor’s instructions, for this is in compliance with the divine ordinance, but, in reality, He Who giveth healing is God.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 155)

It is possible for a man to hold to a book of medicine and say, “I have no need of a doctor; I will act according to the book; in it every disease is named, all symptoms are explained, the diagnosis of each ailment is completely written out, and a prescription for each malady is furnished; therefore, why do I need a doctor?” This is sheer ignorance. A physician is needed to prescribe. Through his skill the principles of the book are correctly and effectively applied until the patient is restored to health.  (Abdu’l-Baha, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 248)

Do not neglect medical treatment when it is necessary, but leave it off when health has been restored.   (Bahá’u’lláh: Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era, 1980 ed.,p. 106)

Even doctors need to consult doctors:

According to the explicit decree of Bahá’u’lláh one must not turn aside from the advice of a competent doctor. It is imperative to consult one even if the patient himself be a well-known and eminent physician. In short, the point is that you would maintain your health by consulting a highly-skilled physician.  (‘Abdul-Bahá, Lights of Guidance, p. 285)

Seek the best doctors you can find:

…thou hast written about thy poor sight. According to the explicit divine text the sick must refer to the doctor. This decree is decisive and everyone bound to observe it. While thou art there thou shouldst consult the most skilled and the most famed eye specialist.  (‘Abdul-Bahá, Lights of Guidance, p. 285)

Get a second opinion:

Before having any serious operation, you should consult more than one qualified physician.  (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 291)

Use doctors and know that healing comes from God:

It is incumbent upon everyone to seek medical treatment and to follow the doctor’s instructions, for this is in compliance with the divine ordinance, but, in reality, He Who giveth healing is God.  (‘Abdul-Bahá, Lights of Guidance, p. 284)

One must obey the command of God and submit to medical opinion. Thou hast undertaken this journey to comply with His command and not for the sake of healing, since healing is in the hand of God, not in the hand of doctors.  (‘Abdul-Bahá, Lights of Guidance, p. 285)

Bahá’u’lláh tells us that in case of disease we should pray but at the same time refer to competent physicians, and abide by their considered decisions. Shoghi Effendi wishes you therefore to find whether your some has really become ill, and if he is, then follow the directions of the doctor. Being versed in the medical sciences they can treat better than even a loving mother can. You can render your assistance by praying for him and at the same time helping the physicians to treat him.         (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 286)

Diet and Foods:

Treat disease through diet, by preference.  (Bahá’u’lláh: Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era, 1980 ed.,p. 106)

The science of medicine is still in a condition of infancy; it has not reached maturity. But when it has reached this point, cures will be performed by things which are not repulsive to the smell and taste of man — that is to say, by aliments, fruits and vegetables which are agreeable to the taste and have an agreeable smell. (Abdu’l-Baha, Some Answered Questions, p. 256)

The Báb hath said that the people of Baha must develop the  science of medicine to such a high degree that they will heal illnesses by means of foods.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 152)

It is the function of a skilled physician to determine which constituent of his patient’s body hath suffered diminution, which hath been augmented. Once he hath discovered this, he must prescribe a food containing the diminished element in considerable amounts, to re-establish the body’s essential equilibrium. The patient, once his constitution is again in balance, will be rid of his disease.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 152)

The proof of this is that while other animals have never studied medical science, nor carried on researches into diseases or medicines, treatments or cures — even so, when one of them falleth a prey to sickness, nature leadeth it, in fields or desert places, to the very plant which, once eaten, will rid the animal of its disease. The explanation is that if, as an example, the sugar component in the animal’s body hath decreased, according to a natural law the animal hankereth after a herb that is rich in sugar. Then, by a natural urge, which is the appetite, among a thousand different varieties of plants across the field, the animal will discover and consume that herb which containeth a sugar component in large amounts. Thus the essential balance of the substances composing its body is re-established, and the animal is rid of its disease.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 152)

It is, therefore, evident that it is possible to cure by foods, ailments and fruits; but as today the science of medicine is imperfect, this fact is not yet fully grasped. When the science of medicine reaches perfection, treatment will be given by foods, ailments, fragrant fruits and vegetables, and by various waters, hot and cold in temperature  (Abdu’l-Bahá: Some Answered Questions, 1982 ed., 257-259)

Drugs:

Refrain from the use of drugs . . . Abstain from drugs when health is good, but administer them when necessary.  (Bahá’u’lláh: Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era, 1980 ed.,p. 106)

Many of us rely on prescription medications with a long list of side effects.  This can’t be good for us:

If a remedy is the cause of disease it would be better to do without the remedy.  (Compilations, Baha’i Scriptures, p. 349)

Any remedy that causes disease does not come from the great and supreme Physician.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Paris Talks, p. 130)

If the remedy bring on disease, then put it aside.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 248)

Now, is it possible that man’s sense of smell, the sense that differentiates odours, should find some odour repugnant, and that odour be beneficial to the human body? Absurd! Impossible! . . . Again, if the sense of taste, likewise a faculty that selecteth and rejecteth, be offended by something, that thing is certainly not beneficial; and if, at the outset, it may yield some advantage, in the long run its harmfulness will be established.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p. 152)

The majority of the diseases which overtake man also overtake the animal, but the animal is not cured by drugs. In the mountains, as in the wilderness, the animal’s physician is the power of taste and smell. The sick animal smells the plants that grow in the wilderness; he eats those that are sweet and fragrant to his smell and taste, and is cured.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Some Answered Questions, p. 257)

Herbs

. . . if you find what is required in a single herb, do not resort to a compounded medicament… (Bahá’u’lláh: Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era, 1980 ed.,p. 106)

Homeopathy:

One of the friends of Persia wrote to Shoghi Effendi and asked this question: “Is it true that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has said that biochemical homeopathy, which is a form of food medicine, is in conformity with the Bahá’í medical concept?” The beloved Guardian’s reply to this question in a letter dated 25th November, 1944 was as follows: “This statement is true, and the truth thereof will be revealed in the future.”  The Universal House of Justice has also asked us to inform you that it does not wish the above statement to be circulated in isolation from the many and varied other texts in the Writings on medicine. However, you may share it with any of your friends who are interested.  (Universal House of Justice, The Compilation of Compilations vol. I, p. 485)

Chiropractic:

There is nothing in the Teachings about chiropractic as a method of healing. People are free to turn to it if they pleas and find help through it.  (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 289)

Magnets:

The other kind of healing without medicine is through the magnetic force which acts from one body on another and becomes the cause of cure. This force also has only a slight effect.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Some Answered Questions, p. 254)

Laying on of hands:

Sometimes one can benefit a sick person by placing one’s hand upon his head or upon his heart. Why? Because of the effect of the magnetism, and of the mental impression made upon the sick person, which causes the disease to vanish. But this effect is also very slight and weak.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Some Answered Questions, p. 254)

He who is filled with love of Bahá, and forgets all things, the Holy Spirit will be heard from his lips and the spirit of life will fill his heart. … Words will issue from his lips in strands of pearls, and all sickness and disease will be healed by the laying on of the hands.  (Dr. J.E. Esslemont, Baha’u’llah and the New Era, p. 112)

Strong Constitution:

A strong constitution often overcomes disease.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Some Answered Questions, p. 255)

Rest:

. . . rest the body in order to do better.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Baha’i World Faith, p. 384)

Thank God I see you spiritual and at rest.  (Abdu’l-Baha, Abdu’l-Baha in London, p. 48)

You should certainly safeguard your nerves, and force yourself to take time, and not only for prayer meditation, but for real rest and relaxation. (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 297)

Suspend all other activities so you can focus on getting well:

Now your father has taken you to the best nerve specialists in…, and they all recommend that you should suspend all your activities until you are fully recovered. It is now your duty as a Bahá’í, and specially as a young believer who has still great services to render the Faith, to make every effort to recovery your health, and to be confident that by making such an effort you will be attracting the confirmations of Bahá’u’lláh, without which no true and lasting healing is possible.  (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 291)

Sleep

There are very few people who can get along without eight hours sleep. If you are not one of those, you should protect your health by sleeping enough. The Guardian himself finds that it impairs his working capacity if he does not try and get a minimum of seven or eight hours.           (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 291)

Education:

A number of development projects have also shown that people’s lives can be altered substantially by appropriate messages through the mass media, reinforce with practical activities. This is being achieved, for example, in the field of health, where communication programmes alter people’s fundamental attitudes towards diarrhoeal diseases. In some instances, people are persuaded to behave in ways opposite to their accustomed behavior (e.g., to feed children instead of withholding food during a diarrhoeal episode).  (Baha’i International Community, 1988 Mar 17, Rural Women)

As a means of service:

You should always bear in mind Bahá’u’lláh’s counsel that we should take the utmost care of our health, surely not because it is an end in itself, but as a necessary means of serving His Cause.  (Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 291)

Euthanasia and Living Wills:

We have received your letter of March 18, 1974 in which you ask for the Bahá’í viewpoint on euthanasia and on the removal of life support in medical cases where physiological interventions prolong life in disabling illnesses. In general our teachings indicate that God, the Giver of life, can alone dispose of it as He deems best, and we have found nothing in the Sacred Text on these matters specifically but in a letter to an individual written on behalf of the beloved Guardian by his secretary regarding mercy killings, or legalized euthanasia, it is stated:  “…this is also a matter which the Universal House of Justice will have to legislate.”  “Until such time as the Universal House of Justice considers legislation on Euthanasia, decisions in the matters to which you refer must be left to the conscience of those responsible            (Universal House of Justice, Lights of Guidance, p. 290)

As to the Bahá’í viewpoint on the removal of withholding of life support in medical cases where intervention prolongs life in disabling illnesses, nothing has been found in the Sacred Text specifically on this matter. In such cases decisions must be left to those responsible, including the patients.  (Universal House of Justice, Lights of Guidance, p. 290)

The Universal House of Justice has found nothing in the Sacred Text about the matter of with-holding or removing life support in disabling or terminal illnesses where intervention prolongs life. Therefore, until such time as the House of justice considers legislation on these matters, it is left to the conscience of the individual concerned whether or not to subscribe to a “living will”.  (Universal House of Justice, Lights of Guidance, p. 290)

For more in this series:

Part 1: Intro to Disease

Part 2:  Reasons for Disease

Part 3:  Physical Causes of Disease

Part 4:  Spiritual Causes of Disease

Part 5:  Effects of Disease

Part 6:  Attitudes towards Disease

Part 7:  Spiritual Treatment for Disease

Part 8:  Physical Treatment for Disease

Part 9:  Why People Aren’t Getting Better

Part 10:  Advice to Doctors

Part 11:  Prayers for Health

Going with the Flow

I’m always praying to “go with the flow”, and when I’m not in it, it causes me great distress.  So imagine my delight when a friend of mine sent me this blog posting, supposedly channeled by the Archangel Gabriel.  I found it so helpful, I’ve been passing it along to my Bahai life coaching clients too, so I thought you might enjoy it too.

The Flow Channeled May 29/09
http://trinityesoterics.wordpress.com/

Flow…what is the flow?

Such a hot topic of conversation these days.  What we have found in enlightening human beings such as yourselves, quite a willingness to move into the flow when there is tangible movement.  Where the enlightening human beings lose their ability to follow the flow is when they are in period of lull (or a lack of perceived movement).  Rather than embracing a lull period as a vital period of time that is designed to allow rest, release and assimilation of energy, for some reason they will very quickly launch themselves into a period of angst.  Rather than seeing it as a lovely and well earned vacation period, they will launch themselves into great despair, usually within a few days, bemoaning the fact that there is no movement, no growth, no creation….that things feel awful, they are depressed, they can’t feel spirit around them, and believe by and large, that they are very  broken indeed.

This is rather comical to us as we lovingly watch you cycle through this because we see it for what it really is.

We give the analogy that if you have students in a classroom, and they suddenly find out that school will be closed for the next few days, they will happily run from the classroom making plans for what they can do with their newfound freedom.  We have yet to see a student linger in a classroom gnashing their teeth over whether they will be perceived as lazy or wondering if something is horribly wrong since their studies won’t be continuing for the next few days. Nor do they fear that their classroom will cease to exist if they leave it.  No, they joyfully delight in the fact that they now have time for leisure activities.  We can learn a lot from our children!

Lulls are created as a gift or present for hard work done.  They do not indicate a lack of progress.  The progress and growth continues, it is just “behind the scenes”, if you will.  It is a time to kind and gentle with yourself, as much can be going on during such a period.  It should embraced, much like a hard worked for and long awaited vacation.   It gives you an opportunity to focus on the now and whatever brings you pleasure – all the things you may have yearned for time to enjoy during a busier period of flow.   During a lull period, people will often be releasing or transmuting lower energies that no longer suit their newly acquired state of being.  They may be integrating new skills or higher energies.  Sometimes this process will require more sleep, or greater amounts of food.  Sometimes it will be marked by unusual bodily symptoms or emotions that you rarely experience anymore.  Often times those experiencing this will send themselves into a frenzy of worry, so concerned that depression, anger, frustration or any of the lower emotions have reared their ugly heads.  They say, “Oh no, not this again…I thought I was past all of this!  There must be something terribly wrong with me!”  They then react by trying to stuff down those old emotions that are trying to leave by suppressing or denying them.

They say, “I have worked so hard, these can’t be mine!”  They are right, that is why they are trying to leave.  Yet they will continue to try to stop this which actually only serves to make the lull period longer and more uncomfortable than it is designed to be.  We suggest that in a time of release, you look at it as a parade.  Oh look, there goes some anger!! There goes a large float of depression!  And look!  Here comes the anxiety!  Wave at them merrily as they pass you by, realizing that they are not stopping at your point on the parade route.

Once the humans come out of their lull period, usually quite battered and worn because they haven’t honored themselves in the way they needed and have resisted the entire process mightily, they carry their fear into the next flow period.  They will see themselves as not whole or worthy and start to panic about their ability to move into the flow.  So now what we have is a human who was doing quite nicely just a few weeks before now afraid of both the lull and the flow.  They start to think, what if there are problems, what if there are things I don’t see, how do I get around them?!  So sad, that even though they were feeling quite competent just a short time ago, they will suddenly doubt their skills and abilities.  Does the child worry that he has lost what was learned before his unexpected vacation?  No, he simply returns to the classroom and picks up where he left off.

We say this to you.  A droplet of water at the top of the stream does not hesitate, concerned that there might be a rock below.  It doesn’t sit there and say what if the rock is big?  Should I go to the left or right of any rocks?  No, the water droplet knows that the momentum of the flow will simply carry it to where it needs to be.  Now, occasionally that water droplet may find itself in a quiet bay of water that has formed along the side of the river. We don’t see the water droplet panicking that it has ended up in the bay. When the time is right, nature will take it’s course and there will be an influx of rain that will allow the water droplet to be swept out of the lull of the bay area and back into the action of the forward moving flow.  This is what we invite you enlightening human beings to do!  We invite you to understand that a lull period serves a great purpose and to embrace both the periods of movement and stillness as being the entirety of the flow.

How does this relate to your life?  Post your comments here:

Developing Good Sleep Habits

In my Bahá’í-inspired life coaching practice, I often meet people who are somewhat confused by the whole topic of sleep. It seems as though there is too much to do in any given day, and it’s hard for them to shut off at night. Sometimes people ask, how much sleep do I really need? The Bahá’í Writings teach:

Regarding your question: There are very few people who can get along without eight hours sleep. If you are not one of those, you should protect your health by sleeping enough. The Guardian himself finds that it impairs his working capacity if he does not try and get a minimum of seven or eight hours.(Shoghi Effendi, Lights of Guidance, p. 291)

So how do you stack up?

When you wake up, do you immediately look forward to going back to bed? When the alarm goes off does it seem as though you just closed your eyes? It’s time to get a good night sleep! After all, it’s amazing what a restful night’s sleep can do for your body.

Battling chronic exhaustion will either force you to find ways to get more rest or it’ll bring on ill health. Naturally, you’ll want to develop an effective sleep routine before your body forces you to rest!

Try some of these sleep tips so you can get a better night’s sleep and wake up feeling energized:

1.Make your bedroom your sanctuary. Keep your bedroom neat and quiet so you feel calm upon entering. Your bedroom needs to be a getaway from the stress of the day. When a TV is on, even if you aren’t watching it, the light output feels almost as great as the sun. This confuses your body and makes it hard to “shut down” even after you’ve turned off the screen.

·If you have a TV or a home office in your bedroom, it will interfere with your ability to go to sleep. Move the television out of the bedroom or at the very least, try placing a sheet over it so you’re not tempted to watch it before bed.

2.Keep your room dark. Your body is designed to sleep when it’s dark. If you’re not used to this, try it for a while anyway. Children are used to sleeping with a light on but you’ll soon realize that it’s a huge distraction in getting to sleep. Pull the curtains closed, turn off all the lights, shut your door, then sleep like you’re hibernating!

·Many stores sell “blackout” curtains that block out the sunlight so the room remains dark. Consider using these curtains to fully darken the room.

3. Exercise during the day. Exercising during the day releases stress hormones to help you feel more relaxed. Most forms of exercise will pep you up and give you more energy immediately afterwards so make sure you exercise well ahead of bedtime.

·The energy you receive from daytime exercise will give you more restful nights because your body will be less stressed and more relaxed. You’ll be giving your body a total makeover!

·Even though yoga is considered relaxing, it may keep you awake if done in the evening hours. Plan your exercise routine either in the morning or late afternoon.

4.Make yourself a bedtime routine. This doesn’t only work with kids. If you get in the habit of going to bed at a certain time, your body will expect to be sleeping. Some recommend milk right before bed, as it contains the sleep inducing chemical tryptophan.

·Create a bedtime routine that involves things that make you tired, such as soft music, a warm shower, light reading material, or journaling.

·Television stimulates the mind too much, which can cause difficulty sleeping. Try recording your favorite nighttime TV shows to watch the next day, rather than staying up late.

5.Leave daytime stress outside. In order to rest, you’ll want to put aside things that keep your mind whirling. By keeping a calendar of things to do the next day, you can put your mind to rest.

·Make sure you’ve dealt with all the questions that keep you awake – what bills need to be paid, what time the doctor appointment is, and so on, before you lay down. This frees you up for sleep.

6. Say a prayer and read the Bahá’í Writings. Exposing your mind to the word of God as the last thing you do before going to sleep, will protect you for the night and set you up for a good night’s sleep. The Bahai Writings teach:

Recite ye the verses of God every . . . eventide.Were a man to read a single verse with joy and radiance it would be better for him . . . Lay . . . upon your souls that which will lighten and uplift them, so that they may soar on the wings of the Divine verses towards the Dawning-place of His manifest signs; this will draw you nearer to God, did ye but comprehend.(Baha’u’llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 73)

This is one of my favorites:

O Lord, I have turned my face unto Thy kingdom of oneness and am immersed in the sea of Thy mercy. O Lord, enlighten my sight by  beholding Thy lights in this dark night, and make me happy by the wine of Thy love in this wonderful age. O Lord, make me hear Thy call, and open before my face the doors of Thy heaven, so that I may see the light of Thy glory and become attracted to Thy beauty. Verily, Thou art the Giver, the Generous, the Merciful, the Forgiving. (Baha’i Prayers, p. 60)

Once you’ve learned to rest well at night, you’ll experience a huge improvement in your quality of life. No more yawning through the mornings and the groggy, grumpy you will be replaced with an energetic person ready to take on life.

So what are you waiting for? Start a relaxing bedtime routine tonight and wake up feeling refreshed tomorrow!

What helps you sleep better?Post your comments here: