Most likely we have raised shields, our means of protection as a child, which we may still be using for our protection.  These shields are limiting beliefs that we have internalized based on our experiences and from our parents and society.
At first you may say that this is not true for you and you do not have any shields up.  In general, it is easier to see these shields (or other means of protection) in other people.  Looking at our own shields requires facing aspects of our own ego or fully feeling our tucked away emotions. 
We may get frustrated with our family or friends for not seeing the rigid shields that they have created.  To protect themselves, their shields keep them from fully giving and receiving love, feeling connection with the Universe and feeling “negative” emotions.  We may also question why they continue to experience the self-inflicted pain and suffering caused by their shields (beliefs).
In the context of Tending to Your Garden Within, it is important to find out what is keeping the trees and flowers in our garden within from thriving.  Do we have a large obstacle (shield) to block the sun light (love)?  Do we inflict hurt and harm (negative self talk) to our garden by repeating self inflicting damage (self-pity) to our garden within?
How do we find out what types of shields we have put up?  Perhaps we can monitor our thoughts and words to investigate our beliefs.  Perhaps we can re-evaluate some previous unpleasant outcomes in our lives to understand how subconsciously our beliefs have contributed to their manifestation.  Perhaps we can ask our close friends to help identify our shields within us.  The poem below highlights this concept.
Let down the shield.
To receive the light of love
the shield needs to be lowered.
Let down the shield
created and used for your protection
as a child or adolescent.
The shield no longer serves its purpose.
It is time to let down the shield.
Investigate the shield of
refusing to receive love.
Let go of the belief that
feeling love brings out
hurt and disappointment.
Investigate the shield of
self punishment.
Let go of the belief that
you cannot trust yourself.
Investigate the shield of
feeling not deserving.
Let go of the belief that
you are separated from the Divine.
Investigate the shield of
shame and guilt.
Let go of the belief that
anger, hatred, or grief should not be felt.
Let the shields down and let the light in.
Copyright @ 2010 by Shervin Hojat

About Shervin

Author, Teacher, Poet, Engineer
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