This essay is 1400 words. It will take about 5-6 minutes to read and much more time to think about. If you bring sufficient attention to it, you will find ways of understanding and establishing elements of comfort that you have never known before. I also hope you will realize that the Enlivening the Twelve Soul Comforts is worth joining. It is a community of comfort.
What is comfort? I am speaking of soul comfort…comfort in your core essence of self. The Twelve Soul Comforts are not about being comfortable in your appearance, surroundings or about your story of childhood, relationships and work. They are about the consciousness of self.
We put a lot of effort into living comfortable lives. If we spend a little effort enlivening the Twelve Soul Comforts, finding and shaping the other comforts of our lives would take far less effort.
I do not write these thoughts as some kind of authority. I don’t want you to believe me. From my own experience, I know the Twelve Comforts to make a true inner difference for me. I write out of my heartfelt reality in hope that the Twelve Comforts will become a heartfelt reality for you. I want to awaken in you a sacred urgency to enliven your own soul with comfort. Nothing is more beautiful than a comforted soul.
A comforted soul integrates an inner equanimity, moral strength and a harmonious weaving of all personal complexities. Soul comfort is about your consciousness and your self sense. Imagine a comfortable soul. Not one that is comfy in the senses or spirit, but one that can sustain, or when disturbed can quickly restore, the inner experience of being peaceful, strong and whole in all circumstances.
A Comfortable Life:
The Ordinary Comforts
The pursuit of ordinary comforts takes up most of our lives. We want to feel good, enjoy pleasure, shape a life of joy. We seek comfort in our body, our senses, our beliefs, our psychology, our relationships, our contributions. I wish everyone these comforts but they are so dependent on externals so they often lack a lasting presence and for the most part are memories and desires and under assault by circumstances, addictions and grandiosity. I still enjoy my other comforts. I am not dismissing any of them, I am just revealing the difference between ordinary comforts and soul comforts.
First. Let’s think of bodily comfort…the cozy soft feeling of your couch while you read or talk with a friend. Or maybe the sensory comfort of soft yet vibrant perceptions of a beautiful sunset or the vocal tones of your favorite singer. Or the soft hug of someone who cares when you face loss. These are wonderful experiences of comfort, but they are all dependent on external realities. Soul comfort is an inner comfort that does not form around our senses but around our inner sense of self.
Many of us seek spiritual comforts. The sacred books we read, the prayers and mantras we speak, the rituals and festivals we celebrate, the conversations we have with God or the divine Mother. All these provide us with the comfort of knowing there is a spiritual reality that comforts us when we suffer. Like our sensory comforts and the dependence on matter, spiritual comforts are dependent on the Divine Other. Soul comfort lives within our soul and resounds with the comfort of the Divine Self, reflecting the Spirit but not seeking rescue or deification.
We are not being cradled by the sensory world or the spiritual world when we experience soul comfort. We are cradled in the Self, in the consciousness that lives between the senses and the spirit.
I definitely love my sensory comforts and I have had a lot of them. I must admit that I have been addicted to many of them. I spend much time planning and indulging and revering my sensory comforts. I eat healthy and yummy food. I sleep on a very good mattress. I soak in a hot and deep bath. I use essential oils. My home is filled with art I love. I go to concerts. I gaze at nature and notice the sun, wind and stars. I hug my grandchildren.
Another aspect of sensory comfort is cultural comfort. Here is where addiction to the comfort of reading, listening, and watching for entertainment and information can be understood. Like all the other comforts, these can be soul enriching, but they can also be soul diminishing when they become about avoiding discomfort. Because of technology we can partake in cultural experiences with ease and frequency. Netflix can be a quick fix and so can the work of Mozart, Hemingway. or Raphael.
I definitely love my spiritual comforts. I meditate and I pray. I study the work of the great spiritual teachers. I contemplate Scripture. I have profound conversations with others on a spiritual path. I trust the presence and guidance of my angel and the spiritual hierarchies. I celebrate the Holy Festivals throughout the year. Every room in my home has sacred art. This deep comfort is essential but it is still external. My soul seeks and responds but it doesn’t generate.
Sensory comfort and spiritual comfort have been with me forever in my memory, but soul comfort or self comfort is a new awareness and understanding.
Yes, most of my life, actually beginning in my childhood, I have been seeking the psychological comfort of having an state of mind and emotions that remained happy and satisfied. I wanted to overcome my imbalances, heal my traumas and achieve an ideal life. I wanted a fix and I wanted a path. I’ve found many fixes and psychologically I matured and developed a capacity to recognize and name and understand my biographical and biological quirks and difficulties. Very comforting, but sadly, more about my story and happy-ever-after endings than an evolving consciousness.
A major aspect of psychological comfort is performance comfort. This is about having comfort with your work, your contribution, your legacy through your self-expression, your passion and your finances. You want comfort around how you show up in the world an how you know what you want to do with your intelligence, your talent , your time and your energy. Again, this seems to be a comfort that is dependent on external realities not inner realities.
Another critical aspect of psychological comfort is relational comfort and connection to others. Family, lovers, friends, service providers, neighbors. Our relationships are myriad and so are our levels of comfort in those relationships. Relational comfort requires the presence of others and depends on our mutually expressed and fulfilled desires for engagement, belonging and attachment. We must celebrate, grieve, and forgive differences to know the comfort of relationships.
The Twelve Soul Comforts
The Twelve Soul Comforts are not sensory, spiritual or psychological. The twelve comforts weave together and form a cloth to swaddle your consciousness so that your sensory, spiritual and psychological comforts can grow higher, deeper and broader in ways unimagined. You become the center and the periphery that contains, nurtures and cultivates the sensory self, the spiritual self and the psychological self.
The Comforted Soul is the experience of the Divine Self incarnated in the self. “I” is spoken with divine consolation, strength and wholeness . It experiences inner certainty and courage regardless of the presence or absence of sensory, spiritual or psychological comforts. It is the “I” of pure Self-awareness. It is the celebration of being and becoming, of meaning and purpose. It is the absolute in the transitory. The Twelve Soul Comforts depend only on the inner experience of Self. This has nothing to do with selfishness or egotism.
Enlivening the Twelve Comforts illuminates this personal experience of the Divine Self. Once enlivened the twelve comforts do not require any of the other comforts to be present.Your soul can be directly comforted in every moment by each of the twelve comforts.
When we enliven the Twelve Comforts a thirteenth comfort arises. It is the holy comfort of “I AM.”
Please join the community of Comfort. Join not just for all that you will receive, but with the feeling that your presence and participation will serve everyone else in the course. Be willing to give and receive.
Only through the comforted soul of the “I AM” can we fully understand with love and freedom other human souls , the comfort of “YOU ARE.”
I birth wondrous innocence.
I speak living questions.
I hear quiet wisdom
I feel tender self-compassion.
I express myself with courageous authenticity.
I embrace my limitations.
I recognize my essential needs.
I activate my inner resolve.
I enliven my imaginations.
I perceive my inner freedom.
I radiate universal love.
I unite with cosmic harmonies.
When your soul perceives and understands these twelve comforts, all the other work of finding, knowing and becoming a fully manifest imagination of Self has an ever-present core.
I imagine the Spiritual Hierarchies provided us with these comforts as their gifts to us at our birth. But we must open these gifts and energize them. We must bring them to life!
Enlivening the Twelve Comforts 2018
An Imagine Self Academy course
I will be offering an online course on Enlivening the Twelve Comforts beginning Saturday, February 3. We will be working with each comfort for four weeks (48 weeks total) To get value from the course, you will need to spend 30-120 minutes each week working on your inner comfort.
There will be webinars, prompts for reflections, and conversations, an active discussion forum, access to me for personal guidance and the presence of angels.
No matter where you live on the planet you can participate in this online course. All course content is downloadable.
to learn more and register for
Enlivening the Twelve Comforts
I found the 12 Comforts doing to my self-sense and soul-seeking and what I imagine that to be, from day-to-day, what it set out to do with LJ at the helm. It confirmed what I was born knowing, that the Universe is on my side and there is love as IT’S ultimate meaning, if we would only let go of our false egoism and impossible ‘petty’ dreams. Existence is God’s, ‘the gods’ ‘BIG DREAM and we have to find our way to play our part in that, as best we can. LJ was such a great navigator on our behalf on this wider sea.
Stephen Johnson, UK, a participant in Deepening the Twelve Comforts 2017