QI & Me by Jordan Paul

How-to-turn-a-frog-into-a-prince_cropQI, the life force of the universe, reflects the qualities of the metaphorical heart. Based in love and compassion, these qualities transcend any single religion and are common to all major religions.

Although I was raised in the Jewish faith, and gratefully embrace the cultural aspects of Judaism, my religious teaching left me bereft of a spiritual connection. (That is not to say that there is no spiritually in Judaism, it’s just that it was never part of my experience.)

With Quintessential Intelligence as my spiritual connection I am better able to know the meaning of my life, and embrace all people regardless of how they choose to live and worship, or not worship.

How QI Informs My Work and Personal Life

With the faith that comes from Quintessential Intelligence, I’m better able to suppress the urge to be in control and tell others what is right and wrong and how they should think, feel and act. As a parent, grandparent, friend and psychotherapist, I am freed to help others get in touch with their hearts and by accessing their inner guidance increase their personal power. That’s being loving and it feels great.

Listening to QI has helped me have more fun both by myself and with others. In surrendering to the moment, I can laugh and play more fully and connect with nature like never before. Whether skiing down an awesome tree-lined trail, playing with my grandchildren, or looking at the grandeur outside my window, I feel deep gratitude for the Quintessential Intelligence that created such perfection and beauty and gave me the privilege of this life.

By listening to the wisdom that comes through my heart I’m better able to love myself, my family and my neighbors whether they are next door or across the world.

What My Most Profound Teachers and Experiences Me About QI

On my spiritual journey, I have explored many different disciplines. I feel blessed to have studied with some very profound spiritual teachers who taught me how Quintessential Intelligence brings me closer to my authentic self, my heart. There are too many wonderful teachers to mention all of them but here are just a few.

On meeting Fr. Thomas Keating at St. Benedict’s Monastery in Snowmass Colorado I was mesmerized by his message and presence. I began reading, Open Mind, Open Heart and practicing his contemplative prayer meditation. One day during my meditation a figure appeared in the distance. As it came closer I recognized it as Jesus. I bolted out of meditation and shook my head in disbelief.

Beating a hasty retreat to the monastery, I said to Fr. Keating, “What is that guy doing in the meditation practice of a Rabbi’s grandson? Through his warm and accepting smile he wisely counseled, “I don’t know. That’s for you to discover.”

I began studying the life of Jesus. I was introduced to the work of Dr. Marcus Borg and read Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time. Borg’s idea that struck like a thunderbolt was that for Jesus, compassion was the central quality of God and the central moral quality of a life centered in God. I thought, “That’s it! What else spiritually do I need?” Years later I recognized that central quality of God to be the bedrock of Quintessential Intelligence.

After moving to Northern California I met renowned Buddhist teacher Dr. Jack Kornfield at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. His books, particularly A Path With Heart, deepened my understanding of the central idea in Buddhism, compassion.

More recently, I had the great fortune to meet and study with Rabbi Zalman Schacter-Shalomi. Through Reb Zalman, the embodiment of compassion, I could finally embrace the spiritual dimension and Quintessential Intelligence in Judaism.

Compassion, the heart of QI, has led the way to a more meaningful, peaceful and joyful life and became the bedrock for Becoming Your Own Hero.

Practices That Help Me Integrate QI More Into My Life

My most important practice in embracing QI and living more connected to my heart is becoming more aware of the aspects of purity that make up my heart and learning more about when I’m disconnected from it. Without that awareness problems fester and compound and I don’t do anything about them. I’m stuck.

What helps in my awareness is my daily check-ins. Before falling off to sleep I review the day looking for any interactions where I might have been disconnected from my heart. By becoming more aware of times that I was disconnected I’m better able to catch myself next time it happens. Then, I can make amends to anyone that I was disrespectful toward, including most importantly, myself and learn more about resolving the beliefs and fears that created that disconnection.