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Posts from the ‘Hope’ Category

Drop or Arrow

“In one drop of water are found all the secrets of all the oceans.” – Khalil Gibran

“From which sense of center will we live our days: as an arrow always seeking its mark, or as a drop of water always seeking its home? Half the time, we’re so eager to get somewhere only because we’re uncomfortable with where we are. Much of the time, we’re trying so hard to keep the difficult things out that we stop letting in what is always present and beautiful.”— The Book of Soul: 52 Paths to Living What Matters, Mark Nepo

Each of us makes a choice from where we will live our days. Fluid as a drop of water or an arrow in fervent flight aiming for somewhere else. In the pursuit of what’s next, we miss what already is in this very moment. Allow movement, grace and the slow work of being so you can go deeper into the ocean of your very soul.

“As fish in their grace demonstrate, it’s not surfacing or bottoming that is our home, but our movement back and forth. That immersion brings us alive. For the slow work of being leads us to a thorough life, where the deeper currents moving through us are life-giving and empowering. And the Whole of Life rinsing through our heart and mind is what we feel and think and speak.”— The Book of Soul: 52 Paths to Living What Matters, Mark Nepo

Drops

“Without rain, there is no life.” – Jerry Yang

“Raindrops will always carry their dreams & hopes with them, no matter where they go.”― Anthony T. Hincks

Like drops on leaves after a refreshing rain, we are held. Softly, gently embraced. Things don’t need to be perfect to allow joy, light and gratitude to permeate our daily experience. Discern what’s inevitable and what’s optional.

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.”― Haruki Murakami

Heaven Meets Earth

“Heaven is all around us. All we need is perception; to extol the melodies of Nature’s orchestra.”― Anurag Shourie

“Let your days become a fragrant song where heaven and earth continually collide” ― John Crowder

Nature never fails to show us how heaven meets earth each day. We decide what we see. Narrow or broad. Open or closed. Free or bound. If you are not in awe, do the opposite to change your perception and perspective. If things feel small, look up and witness beauty that remains amidst whatever is going on inside and out.

“Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads.” – Henry David Thoreau

The Embrace of a Breeze

“We never look deeply into the quality of a tree; we never really touch it, feel its solidity, its rough bark, and hear the sound that is part of the tree. Not the sound of wind through the leaves, not the breeze of a morning that flutters the leaves, but its own sound, the sound of the trunk and the silent sound of the roots.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti

It was a beautiful, sunny, breezy day. The trees swayed and didn’t break. Moved and stretched. Embraced and flowed. The leaves danced and held on. May we bend and not break. Breath and flow. And sway with joy.

Let Sunday set the tone for the week. Carry it forward to seize the magic and delight. Each day, even Mondays, especially Mondays, are a gift. Open it and celebrate. The embrace of the breeze. Be held.

“What you really want for yourself is always trying to break through, just as a cooling breeze flows through an open window on a hot day. Your part is to open the windows of your mind.” – Vernon Howard

The Path

“The feeling remains that God is on the journey, too.” – Saint Teresa of Avila

Some of the path is paved. Much needs to be broken. May we keep moving down the path with our eye on moving through, moving on and reaching new destinations that come from forward motion. No looking back but only to not return. Eyes ahead, open to new paths, to new discoveries, to new self.

Journey Into The Interior
by Theodore Roethke

In the long journey out of the self,

There are many detours, washed-out interrupted raw places

Where the shale slides dangerously

And the back wheels hang almost over the edge

At the sudden veering, the moment of turning.

Better to hug close, wary of rubble and falling stones.

The arroyo cracking the road, the wind-bitten buttes, the canyons,

Creeks swollen in midsummer from the flash-flood roaring into the narrow valley.

Reeds beaten flat by wind and rain,

Grey from the long winter, burnt at the base in late summer.

— Or the path narrowing,

Winding upward toward the stream with its sharp stones,

The upland of alder and birchtrees,

Through the swamp alive with quicksand,

The way blocked at last by a fallen fir-tree,

The thickets darkening,

The ravines ugly.

Rain

“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.” – Rabindranath Tagore

“The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The sky opened and the rain poured out in heavy sheets. A mile out with the dogs guaranteed that we would get soaked and we did. It was refreshing after a hot day and a very heavy week. If only the rain could wash it all away. It did for a moment and after it let up, the sun tried to peak out from behind the clouds.

These are heavy serious days. And in the midst of the rain, we must seek the sun behind the clouds to be buoyed by hope and transformation.

And as I wrap up this day, I decided to take a break from the news, from social media and to do something frivolous by looking for a movie. And, of course, I decided Uncle Buck with John Candy was the best decision right now. Our ability to laugh, to be frivolous, reminds us to lighten up if but for a few hours and rediscover our capacity for joy.

Setting and Rising

“You may write me down in history with your bitter, twisted lines. You may trod me in the very dirt, but still, like dust, I’ll rise.” – Maya Angelou

“Love is like a virus. It can happen to anybody at any time.” – Maya Angelou

May we all be blessed enough to catch the virus of love. To never succumb to the darkness. To seize the light and ensure that we cast the light broad and deep to cultivate hope, joy and peace. That is the only worthy thing to cling to, to aspire to, to work for. Be kind. Change hearts, change the world.

“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.” – Maya Angelou

 

Real Peace

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” – John 14:27

“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” – Buddha

May we be quiet.
May we listen.
May we reach out.
May we seek truth.
May we be gentle.
May we pursue justice.
May we seek peace.
Real peace that changes hearts.
New day. Same prayer.

May we listen.
A peace that passes all understanding.

“Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love.” – Francis of Assisi

The Sixth Stage

“Faith is trust in ultimate meaning.” – Viktor E. Frankl

In 1969, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’ wrote the classic book On Death and Dying which defined the five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. And the journey is not a linear or orderly trip. We go from one to the next and bounce back and forth, doing the best we can in the moment.

I’ve returned to the stages many times when losing loved ones, which has happened a lot in the past four years. Recently, I’ve been reflecting on the stages with loss of “normal” life that has come with COVID-19 and now with George Floyd’s horrific death in Minneapolis followed by riots, burning and destruction of over 170 buildings/neighborhood businesses in St. Paul and Minneapolis. It’s heavy and difficult to string together words that can adequately describe the sorrow and angst.

David Kessler who co-authored On Grief and Grieving with Kübler-Ross has written a new book Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief, adding a sixth stage of grief – meaning. Finding meaning takes time, fortitude and distance. We are deep in a lot of anger.

May we not succumb to despair and fear. With hope and grace, meaning will come to open our hearts to love rather than hate, empathy over apathy, light rather than darkness. Peace starts within each one of us. Start there and then move out into the world.

“I know for sure that loves saves me and that it is here to save us all.” – Maya Angelou

Hope

“Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

“Just as despair can come to one only from other human beings, hope, too, can be given to one only by other human beings.” – Elie Wiesel

When humanity fails again and again, when hatred is loud, drown it out with love, understanding, listening, hope, justice, empathy, kindness, compassion, light and peace. Soften to feel the pain of others. Be kind.

“I love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but they whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves their conduct, will pursue their principles unto death.” – Leonardo da Vinci

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