“To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.”― Mary Oliver
“Nothing has such power to broaden the mind as the ability to investigate systematically and truly all that comes under thy observation in life.” – Marcus Aurelius
A painted rock on a snowbank on a morning walk
Slow enough to see the detail in the moment
The gravity of now
Time held still to reveal and rejoice in what already is overflowing
Even God rested on Sunday
And it was and is good.
“You enter the extraordinary by way of the ordinary.”― Frederick Buechner
“Listen to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery it is. In the boredom and pain of it, no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it, because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.”― Frederick Buechner, Now and Then: A Memoir of Vocation
Create margin, white space, quiet to listen, tune in.
Allowing new thoughts and insights to enter, not the same worn-out opinions and assumptions to rule.
Slow to take in the scenery, to be held in the mystery.
Less doing, more being.
Even if only for a short respite.
To be made and remade again and again.
Filling the well to pour more into the world.
Grace, peace and love.
May you receive and give these today.
“We do not pray so that we can get God’s attention. We pray so that God will get our attention.”― David G. Benner, Opening to God: Lectio Divina and Life as Prayer
“Be slow to speak, and only after having first listened quietly, so that you may understand the meaning, leanings, and wishes of those who do speak. Thus you will better know when to speak and when to be silent.” – Saint Ignatius
Between thoughts and actions lies a threshold, a still point. Guide the direction of your thoughts and attention, anchor in gratitude and abundance. Cross the threshold to actions that contribute, create and multiply. Choose response over reaction. Amplify positive over negative. Release energy over exhaustion.
Observe. Listen. Learn.
“If you make listening and observation your occupation you will gain much more than you can by talk.” – Robert Baden-Powell
“I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. So if I’m going to learn, I must do it by listening.” – Larry King
For years, I have inconsistently practiced Julia Cameron’s method of Morning Pages– three pages of writing each morning to gain clarity, to center and unravel thoughts. I started doing them consistently for the past year and it has proven to be a worthy investment of 10-20 minutes each day.
She just released her 40th book The Listening Path, The Creative Art of Attention and it came in the mail yesterday. Her basic tools are still the same that she uses in her workshops and that began with her book 25 years ago – The Artist’s Way – Morning Pages, Artists Dates and Walks. When something works, stick with it. Keep it simple, repeat, unfold.
“With Morning Pages, we serve as a witness to our own experience, listening to ourselves each morning and thus clearing the way for further listening throughout the day. With Artist Dates, we listen to the youthful part of ourselves who craves adventure and is full of interesting ideas. And with Walks, we listen to both our environment and to what might be called our higher power or higher self,” states Cameron. “Focused on conscious listening, we become aware of a listening path: a path grounded in what we hear. When we listen, we are led spiritually. Listening for emerging truth, we become increasingly true to ourselves. Honesty becomes our currency. We are given a glimpse of our souls.”
Create rituals, non-negotiable daily practices and habits to hone your attention skills and expand your perspective. Listen. Learn. Change. Always growing, going deeper, returning home to self.
“We can change the world if we change ourselves. We just need to get hold of the old patterns of thinking and dealing with things and start listening to our inner voices and trusting our own superpowers.” – Nina Hagen