“Every particular in nature, a leaf, a drop, a crystal, a moment of time is related to the whole, and partakes of the perfection of the whole.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Depth and connection are found in each moment, a drop at a time. Meaning and understanding grow with time in the ocean of the drops of our days. In between, we find peace and contentment in trust and faith that it will all make sense and the story ends as it should.
In the present moment, a drop and day at a time, is where we are meant to remain awake and aware. For the past resides in the vast ocean and the future waits its turn to enter into the present, a drop at a time.
“A jug fills drop by drop.” – Buddha
“We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them.” – Khalil Gibran
The three day rain stopped this morning and clear blue skies holding up the sun replaced the clouds. I decided to go a different route to work. At the bottom of the hill, cars were backed up at a standstill. After waiting for a minute, many cars started to turn around to find another route. Normally, that would be my first instinct, find the short cut and rush to my destination. No time for delay. Instead, I stayed on the road, starting and stopping, moving slowly and looking around at all of the scenery that I normally race past. Turning the curve, the sun hovered over the lake beaming through the trees.
“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.” – Beverly Sills
In grateful awe, I stopped and let it in. Taking the long cut set the course for the day. Calm, slow and steady. Had I found a short cut, I would have missed the beauty waiting to be noticed, longing to be embraced and held.
In a short cut, hurry up world, we are invited to take a new path, to change course and awaken to all that is right now. Slow down and I would highly recommend that you take the long cut. It’s a beautiful ride.
“Help us to be ever faithful gardeners of the spirit, who know that without darkness nothing comes to birth, and without light nothing flowers.” – May Sarton
Put down the unnecessary and walk softly into the day. Aware, awake and open to the light within and the light abound.
Tend to the garden of your spirit so you may decipher what is truly important, of lasting value, of light. Rain, sun, summer, winter each play their part to create the whole. Till, plant, sow seeds, prepare for brilliant colors and new life in due time.
“What is saving my life now is the conviction that there is no spiritual treasure to be found apart from the bodily experiences of human life on earth. My life depends on engaging the most ordinary physical activities with the most exquisite attention I can give them. My life depends on ignoring all touted distinctions between the secular and the sacred, the physical and the spiritual, the body and the soul. What is saving my life now is becoming more fully human, trusting that there is no way to God apart from real life in the real world.” ― Barbara Brown Taylor, An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith
As I speed through the days, I long for inspiration, for words and deeds that bring me back to the spirit, to the soul, to what life “should” be. Only to find that right in the middle of every day, of real life in the real world, the spirit and soul remains, anchoring me to what’s real and true. As we pendulum from right to left, bounce up and down, race between busy and busier, all that we need remains right where we are. Wake up. It’s all mixed together, as it should be.
“Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.” – Marcus Aurelius
“The thankful receiver bears a plentiful harvest. “– William Blake
We often hear or say thank goodness it’s Friday. I try not to but must admit that some weeks I do. When we live Friday to Friday, vacation to vacation, we miss the joy that is to be harvested each day. Do something new, quietly reflect with deep gratitude, connect with others and by all means, play.
When we live right smack in the moment seeking goodness and light, every day is Friday.
“Nothing is more important than reconnecting with your bliss. Nothing is as rich. Nothing is more real.” – Deepak Chopra
Our life must be more than lists, tasks and the race to what’s next. As we complicate our life with busyness in hot pursuit of who knows what, it is always the simple moments and encounters that bring us back to our best self, to meaning and joy, to our bliss.
Get off the rollercoaster and get grounded in what is calling to you. We all have it. That quiet voice, the gut feeling, the longing where our spirit and soul resides waiting to be released, to play and dance.
We need not know the end of the story. Write a sentence at a time and the story unfolds through the risk of movement leading us to our true north. Start with one word, a new thought, a simple act, a shift in perspective.
With practice and presence, the mundane transforms to marvelous, laughter to gratitude, simplicity to depth. We become masters of life through practice, ups and downs, wins and losses, work and most important, play.
“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.” – Joseph Campbell
“Every day, the heart keeps beating and the lungs keep breathing. Likewise, the endless practice of bringing our soul into the world lets us keep unfolding. It’s a limitless journey of coming alive, which entails messy, joyous, unfathomable drama of being human.” – Mark Nepo, The Endless Practice
When heaviness hovers, release;
When tired, rest;
When self-pity enters, give;
When consumed with work, play;
When answers are sparse, patience;
When tomorrow is uncertain, faith;
When gravity pulls you down, rise;
When everything is serious, laugh;
When darkness looms, light;
When alone, look;
When in a rut, move;
When overwhelmed, pray;
When everything is complicated, simplify;
When you forget your blessings, gratitude;
“The tension between ‘yes’ and ‘no’, between ‘I can’ and ‘I cannot’, makes us feel that, in so many instances, human life is an interminable debate with one’s self.” – Anatole Broyard
In order to say “yes” to the right things, to life, we need to say “no” to the distractions and disruptions that pull us off center. While some distractions and disruptions can be signs and cues to change, most are mere noise.
Saying “no” is hard. When we accept that we can’t do it “all” and say “yes” to being fully present, “no” comes more easily. Important trumps urgency. Connection trumps transaction. Wonder trumps obligation.
We all need to “make a living” but it need not be at the expense of experiencing a full and grateful life. Get busy being less busy by saying “no” so you can get to the “yes” of living well right now.
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” – William Arthur Ward
“The bluebird carries the sky on his back.” – Henry David Thoreau
Over 25 years ago, I received a glass “Bluebird of Happiness” from a woman who I helped figure out a new regulation that impacted her family business. She was very grateful and took the time to not only mail me a thank you note but the beautiful glass bluebird. I still have it and remember what it meant then and now.
We will either be remembered most for what we took or what we gave. And as we take more, we soon realize that it will never be enough to fill our cup. When we give more, we discover the gift of giving that overflows and returns to us again and again. When gratitude takes hold, the only option we have is to share it.
Foster gratitude within so you can cast gratitude and light into the world.
Without hesitation, we let doubt and fear enter our thoughts, control our actions, putting us into a “holding” pattern. Holding back, holding up. We too easily accept less rather than risk more, putting conditions, rules and fences around wide open spaces. “I can’t do this because of this … If I do this then this will happen … I need this to happen then I can do that … I am not good enough to do that…I’m too old to do something different…”
Entertain the endless possibilities present for yourself, others and the world. Abundance over scarcity. Fulfillment over comfort. Curiosity over inevitability. Action over acquiescence.
No more fear of what may or may not happen if… Invite, entertain and welcome new ideas and possibilities for your life.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” – Marianne Williamson