Jay Z's Got 99 Problems And I've Got One / by Dana Bergstrom


"Heaven is here. There is nowhere else.

Heaven is now. There is no other time."


This quote always chills me out and puts me in a state where everything is smoooooth, ya know, no rough edges...much like a hit off some good weed but without the actual weed.

Hey! No jail time for Dana if she's only addicted to quotes!

I read various spiritual texts and I often find sayings like that one from A Course in Miracles (ACIM) floating around in my head.

ACIM redefines a lot of typical Christian terms. For example, "heaven" is not a shiny, happy place for well-behaved, dead people, but is simply a peaceful state of mind. 

ACIM is a non-dualistic, self-study course, claiming that there is only one problem.

That one problem is the belief that there's separation from All-That-Is, which some call "God".

And as one who's not fond of divisiveness, I absolutely LOVE that idea.

That's why I no longer think of Hell as a place. Hell is just the focus on lack.

Jay Z's got all kinds of problems - rap critics, racial profiling from police officers, and aggressors.

And I've got one: Whenever I believe I need anything to be different than it currently is, I'm creating a hell for myself.

When I believe that thought of separation, it only attracts similar thoughts, so a whole world built on lack and scarcity (basically, loads of problems) will arise to meet my ego's separation-based perception.

In ACIM, a miracle is simply defined as a "shift in perception".

Shifting away from the ego's belief in lack and to my true nature as wholeness, creates an entirely new experience of life.

Eckhart Tolle is one of many teachers offering the same idea:

Be in the Now. Dissolve yourself into presence.

Yet my ego has me regularly convinced that focusing on anything else besides my present state is of utmost importance.

It likes to tell me that I'm not gonna get a thing done and I'll have even more problems, if I just sit around feeling connected with everything.

But I'm onto that bugger.

I have years of trying too hard and struggling under my belt. And all of those efforts based on lack have produced less-than-inspired results and usually included a fair amount of physical discomfort and personal suffering too.

I've also experienced the effortless, inspired action that arises out of presence in wholeness, which is waaaaay more fun.

Eckhart Tolle expresses the idea with great clarity in this interview.

Other teachers like Abraham Hicks say the same thing in simpler terms.

Jin Shin Jyutsu reinforces this concept through do-it-yourself energy work.

And if you dig antiquated Christian vernacular, poetic iambic pentameter, and a whole lotta stuff about ego and spirit, then check out ACIM here.

There are countless similar modalities and teachings. None are any better than any others.

And this is what's so great!

We get to discover what teachings and practices resonate for each of us as they lead us to our own unique path of freedom/enlightenment/salvation/self-realization.

Call it whatever you want.

In the end, it's about the joy of remembering the inherent wholeness in everything, which is the solution to my one problem.