Inner Peace by Shanza Jai: I fell off a 50-foot cliff in Sedona, Arizona, which then took me on a journey bringing me a bit closer to living my dharmic path.

How do you use your words? Are you aware that you are creating your life through your words every moment of every day? Are you aware that every word is a prayer?

When I learned this, it profoundly affected me, my consciousness and my life. Two days later I fell off a 50-foot cliff in Sedona, Ariz., which then took me on a journey bringing me a bit closer to living my dharmic path. So, here I am in Ashland to share my experience of how changing my words created inner peace for myself.

I learned the Mastery of Language from a teacher of Robert Tennyson Stevens. Bob learned, while studying the Hopis for his thesis in college, that their language had no past or future tenses. Think of it! If you pause and take that in you will get the motivation. He began moving deeper into this phenomenon, realizing that we could literally change our lives by changing our language.

The next morning after the workshop that day in '97, it came very clear to me that I would choose to be in silence for a few days to see what that offered me. I listened to what my mind was saying to itself. I was astonished to learn that my thoughts were very damaging to me. A perfect view of my ego that had wrapped itself around the social consciousness and that I told myself I was a victim of that consciousness. When I looked at the results in my life, it agreed. My own consciousness was filled with beliefs, structures, old thoughts and decisions ... all based on a scared child wanting to live, be seen and thrive.

I began forgiving myself. Deeply touching that place that knows what my thoughts were saying to me weren't really true, but then what was? When I listened to what had been unconscious all these years, I cried. More forgiveness. I studied the Course in Miracles about 10 years before this and learned from the course that these thoughts were not mine. It became very clear to me that conscious language was the next appropriate thing to help me grow and live in the present moment. I thought living in the moment was a concept, but no — for me, as I have learned through the years of practice, it's the closest thing to living with God and inner peace.

How many times do you invalidate your own words? Do you even realize it? When you share with your friends a most exciting event, do you say it's "unbelievable?" When you are happy to share something good do you say "it's incredible?" Do you use slang? Gossip? In asking myself these questions and many more, I woke up to the many ways my programmed mind had immediate answers, yet all unconscious. Each time I would forgive myself and vow to change my thoughts and use my mind as God would have it used: for my good. What I learned was that my entire life changed!

As I practiced living in a "credible" world, a world that I was choosing to "believe in," I changed. I began making better choices for myself. I began speaking to people's highest choice for them and they responded in kind for themselves. Then I realized: What if my words now became immediately true? Would I say what I am saying or thinking right now?

My whole world changed. I practiced a more loving and kind world, to me, through my thoughts. I then learned that the way I treated myself, I would treat others. Grace expanded through me, then flowed onto others. My friends and I became a pool of deep love for each other and the ripples widened beyond us. Happiness abounded, grace became more present and inner peace a gift to be breathed each moment of each day, choosing the reality I would live.

Shazna Jai, author, spiritual facilitator, Reiki master teacher, Melchizedek priestess and Oneness Blessing facilitator, lives in Ashland and travels throughout the country as a speaker and teacher. She facilitates a meditation class in Grants Pass and is available for healing sessions. See www.sheryljai.net or call 210-2892.

You are invited to submit a 650 to 700 word article about your path to Inner Peace. E-mail your submission or questions to Sally McKirgan at innerpeace@q.com. For previous articles, visit dailytidings.com.