“Beauty is the illumination of your soul.” – John O’Donohue
Wherever you are, wherever you wander today, may beauty be your companion, light your friend, joy your spirit.
On Beauty by Kahlil Gibran
“And a poet said, Speak to us of Beauty.
And he answered:
Where shall you seek beauty, and how shall your find her unless she herself be your way and your guide?
And how shall you speak of her except she be the weaver of your speech?
The aggrieved and the injured say, “Beauty is kind and gentle.
Like a young mother half-shy of her own glory she walks among us.”
And the passionate say, “Nay, beauty is a thing of might and dread.
Like the tempest she shakes the earth beneath us and the sky above us.”
The tired and the weary say, “Beauty is of soft whisperings. She speaks in our spirit.
Her voice yields to our silences like a faint light that quivers in fear of the shadow.”
But the restless say, “We have heard her shouting among the mountains,
And with her cries came the sound of hoofs, and the beating of wings and the roaring of lions.”
At night the watchmen of the city say, “Beauty shall rise with the dawn from the east.”
And at noontide the toilers and the wayfarers say, “We have seen her leaning over the earth from the windows of the sunset.”
In winter say the snow-bound, “She shall come with the spring leaping upon the hills.”
And in the summer heat the reapers say, “We have seen her dancing with the autumn leaves, and we saw a drift of snow in her hair.”
All these things have you said of beauty,
Yet in truth you spoke not of her but of needs unsatisfied,
And beauty is not a need but an ecstasy
It is not a mouth thirsting nor an empty hand stretched forth,
But rather a heart enflamed and a soul enchanted.
It is not in the image you would see nor the song you would hear,
But rather an image you see though you close your eyes and a song you hear though you shut your ears.
It is not the sap within the furrowed bark, nor a wing attached to a claw,
But rather a garden for ever in bloom and a flock of angels for ever in flight.
People of Orphalese, beauty is life when life unveils her holy face.
But you are life and you are the veil.
Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror.
But you are eternity and you are the mirror.”
“Pay attention to the beauty surrounding you.” – Anne Lamott
“Your problem is how you are going to spend this one odd and precious life you have been issued. Whether you’re going to spend it trying to look good and creating the illusion that you have power over people and circumstances, or whether you are going to taste it, enjoy it and find out the truth about who you are.” – Anne Lamott
Wander off path today.
The well-worn one of opinion, judgment, comparison, rightness, cynicism.
Into solemn new territory beyond the echo of old thoughts, assumptions and expectations.
Wide open unfamiliar spaces filled with fresh air, warm sun, a slowing of time.
To be renewed, refreshed, filled up again.
Taste, enjoy, take in the ever-present beauty.
The world will still be there to fix when you return from a short respite.
Perhaps you’ll notice hope awaiting to guide your next steps.
“When hope is not pinned wriggling onto a shiny image or expectation, it sometimes floats forth and opens.” – Anne Lamott
“It is when we notice the dirt that God is most present in us; it is the very sign of His presence.” – C.S. Lewis
“May you listen to the voice within the beat even when you are tired. When you feel yourself breaking down, may you break open instead. May every experience in life be a door that opens your heart, expands your understanding, and leads you to freedom. If you are weary, may you be aroused by passion and purpose. If you are blameful and bitter, may you be sweetened by hope and humor. If you are frightened, may you be emboldened by a big consciousness far wiser than your fear. If you are lonely, may you find love, may you find friendship. If you are lost, may you understand that we are all lost, and still we are guided—by Strange Angels and Sleeping Giants, by our better and kinder natures, by the vibrant voice within the beat. May you follow that voice, for This is the way—the hero’s journey, the life worth living, the reason we are here.”― Elizabeth Lesser
Keep planting, tilling, tending.
Bloom comes in its own time.
Rising from the dirt.
Allow, invite, observe.
Heavy sigh, the waiting.
And it is in the waiting, transformation from seed to bloom is doing its work.
Pause the pursuit and be found.
Listen, watch, all senses in play.
Slow down, quiet, peel the layers.
Your voice, whispering.
“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness.” – Galatians 5:22
“A good blessing possesses something of what Celtic folk have long called a thin place, a space where the veil between worlds becomes permeable, and heaven and earth meet.” — The Cure for Sorrow: A Book of Blessings for Times of Grief by Jan Richardson
In loss and gain.
In harvest and desert.
In between, before, during, after.
In ordinary and extraordinary.
In each moment.
Permeable, present, overwhelming.
May blessings, fruit and love be the ground you stand on, carry, and be held by.
“There is no remedy for love but to love more.” – Henry David Thoreau
“Life is a series of collisions with the future; it is not the sum of what we have been, but what we yearn to be.” – Jose Ortega y Gasset
“The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.” – Christopher McCandless
“Zen pretty much comes down to three things — everything changes; everything is connected; pay attention.”― Jane Hirshfield
“You may do this, I tell you, it is permitted. Begin again the story of your life.”― Jane Hirshfield, The Lives of the Heart
May you feel the air surging through your chest;
The power you hold in your hands;
Understand what is yours to do and what is not yours to do;
And to get being as well as doing;
To begin again writing the story of your life each day anew.
“One breath taken completely; one poem, fully written, fully read – in such a moment, anything can happen.”― Jane Hirshfield, Nine Gates: Entering the Mind of Poetry
“Faith requires following the power of a whisper.”― Shannon L. Alder
“That’s the great, enduring challenge of our modern times, is it not, to marry faith and reason? So hard–so unreasonable–to root our lives upon a distant wisp of holiness. Faith is grand but impractical: How does one live an eternal idea in a daily way? It’s so much easier to be reasonable. Reason is practical, its rewards are immediate, its workings are clear. But alas, reason is blind. Reason, on its own, leads us nowhere, especially in the face of adversity. How do we balance the two, how do we live with both faith and reason?” — Yann Martel
May the wisp of a flower
The brilliant blue of the sky
The air fresh, a soft breeze
Summer’s invitation to repose and play
May it all touch, hold and release your being
Into joy, delight and ease
Depth, meaning, beauty abound, ready for harvest
“Tradition whispers that in the sky is a bird, blue as the sky itself, which brings to its finders happiness. But everyone cannot see it; for mortal eyes are prone to be blinded by the glitter of wealth, fame, and position, and deceived by the mocking Will-o-Wisp of empty honors. But for the fortunate ones who seek with open eyes and hearts, with the artlessness, simplicity, and faith which are richest in childhood, there is an undying promise; and to them the Blue Bird lives and carols, a rejoicing symbol of Happiness and Contentment unto the end.” — Venice J. Bloodworth