Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘optimism’

Who will you meet today?

“We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far.” – Swami Vivekananda

Invite and entertain new thoughts.
Engage in conversations to create connection.
There’s a vast landscape to be discovered in front of us.
Understanding, depth, a sacredness.
Be kind and generous.
Remove the layers to reveal the gift.
Grace given. Grace received.
Who will you meet today?

“The moment I have realized God sitting in the temple of every human body, the moment I stand in reverence before every human being and see God in him – that moment I am free from bondage, everything that binds vanishes, and I am free.” – Swami Vivekananda

Arise! Awake!

“Arise! Awake! and stop not until the goal is reached.” – Swami Vivekananda

“The real enemies of our life are the ‘oughts’ and the ‘ifs.’ They pull us backward into the unalterable past and forward into the unpredictable future. But real life takes place in the here and now.” – Henri Nouwen

Move in from the edges, from the surface
Into deep waters
Into the center of now
To unknowing, to mystery, to the core
Beyond first impressions, assumptions and stale thoughts
Into beauty, delight, joy
New day, new thoughts, new enthusiasm
Light from within
Open the door, windows wide
Fresh air, deep breath

“Each day holds a surprise. But only if we expect it can we see, hear, or feel it when it comes to us. Let’s not be afraid to receive each day’s surprise, whether it comes to us as sorrow or as joy It will open a new place in our hearts, a place where we can welcome new friends and celebrate more fully our shared humanity.” – Henri Nouwen

Lingering Gaze

“When the green woods laugh with the voice of joy, And the dimpling stream runs laughing by; When the air does laugh with our merry wit, And the green hill laughs with the noise of it.” – William Blake

“In a world myriad as ours, the gaze is a singular act: to look at something is to fill your whole life with it, if only briefly.”― Ocean Vuong, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous

May you be overwhelmed and embraced with the fullness of today.
Lingering in the summer sun.
Slowing to see bounty and abundance in reach.
A singular act.
The drains of heaven.
At our feet.
Walk softly on this holy sacred ground.
Lighter.
With ease, gratitude and in amazement.

“Stars. Or rather, the drains of heaven – waiting. Little holes. Little centuries opening just enough for us to slip through.”― Ocean Vuong, Night Sky with Exit Wounds

Caught

“Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.” – Soren Kierkegaard

May you be caught rather than pursue
Snagged in the web of the present moment rather than racing by
Tangled in awe and wonder
Technicolor, fierce, on fire
Detoured and delayed in delight and beauty
Held and embraced, awake to this day alone
Capturing, experiencing, living
Fully.

“Our life always expresses the result of our dominant thoughts.” – Soren Kierkegaard

June

flower

“In June as many as a dozen species may burst their buds on a single day. No man can heed all of these anniversaries; no man can ignore all of them.” – Aldo Leopold

“Spring being a tough act to follow, God created June.” – Al Bernstein

Pause.
Pull over.
Rest awhile.
The beginning of summer.
The season that never goes slow.
So we must slow to steep in it like a tea bag.
Soaking up flavor and essence.
Look around, walk slowly, breathe deeply.
June, the beginning of summer glory.
Be present and awake for all of it.
Overwhelmed by color, held by the sun, in praise of earth coming alive.
Inviting us to do the same.

“What is one to say about June, the time of perfect young summer, the fulfillment of the promise of the earlier months, and with as yet no sign to remind one that its fresh young beauty will ever fade.” – Gertrude Jekyll

Stay Gentle

“You will see the blue sky spreading endlessly above you and smiling down.”– Aya Kitô

Open windows driving on a Sunday to nowhere in particular.
A simple act of exploration.
Wind flowing through, hair in the air.
Listening to music.
Really listening as summer is in prelude, ready to burst.
Expanding my playlist to keep discovering new music to feed the soul.
Poetry in motion, senses tuned.
I land on a song from Brandi Carlile, freshly downloaded, new to me.

Stay gentle.
Words that permeate, demand, stick, challenge.
It’s been a rough 2 ½ years of pandemic living.
You can see the weariness on faces of others and when you look in the mirror.
Now people are saying it’s going to be our “new normal,” just the way it is.
I don’t buy it.
Nothing stays forever.
Some things do change us forever.
Growth, acceptance, expansion if we allow, fostered with time.

And still.
And yet.
And for certain.
We get to choose our response.

We can’t let these things or others harden us, narrow our view, insulate us from healing beauty.
We must say, shout, sing a resounding YES! to life, all of it.
No leads nowhere.

Eyes of a child, soft heart, laughter, light, joy, amazed, wild, cracked, imperfect.
Be naïve, love with abandon, stay gentle.
Turn up the music.
A resounding YES!

“Stay gentle, keep the eyes of a child
Don’t harden your heart or your hands
Know to find joy in the darkness is wise
Although they will think you don’t understand

Don’t let the world make you callous
Be ready to laugh
No one’s forgotten about us
There is light on your path

Stay gentle, keep the eyes of a child
And wear your heart on your sleeve
Know to find joy in the darkness is wise
Although they will think you are naive

Don’t let ’em lower your shoulders
Love ’em more while they try
Grow younger while you’re growin’ older
Be amazed by the sky

Darling, stay wild if you can (if you can)
The girl with the world in her hands (in her hands)
The kingdom of Heaven belongs to a boy
While his worry belongs to a man

Stay gentle, stay gentle
The most powerful thing you can do
Oh, gentle, unbreakable you” – song by Brandi Carlile

More than Just

“Beauty is whatever gives joy.” – Edna St. Vincent Millay

May spring, transformation, light bloom within you.
Each day, may you see beauty, experience joy, awe and delight.
Pause, witness, praise.
A new day, write some good paragraphs today in your story.
You are the author, pick up the pen.

“Don’t just learn, experience.
Don’t just read, absorb.
Don’t just change, transform.
Don’t just relate, advocate.
Don’t just promise, prove.
Don’t just criticize, encourage.
Don’t just think, ponder.
Don’t just take, give.
Don’t just see, feel.
Don’t just dream, do.
Don’t just hear, listen.
Don’t just talk, act.
Don’t just tell, show.
Don’t just exist, live.”

― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

Joy Reminds

“Make the most of your regrets; never smother your sorrow, but tend and cherish it till it comes to have a separate and integral interest. To regret deeply is to live afresh.”— Henry David Thoreau, The Heart of Thoreau’s Journals

“All Joy reminds. It is never a possession, always a desire for something longer ago or further away or still ‘about to be’.”― C.S. Lewis, Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life

From dirt to bloom to dormancy back to bloom yet again.
In all the seasons, circles and cycles of life, enter the rhythm, flow and cadence.
The “what” and “when” we often do not know, but we can choose the “how” we move through.
True Joy is detached from circumstances, a foundation, the dirt, the ground to firmly plant and stand on.
May you be carried by joy, hope, faith and love through each day.
Abide in gratitude, praise and glory.
In communion with life, married to joy.

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.” – Epicurus

Kindness

“People are not problems to be solved. They are mysteries to be explored.” – Eugene H. Peterson

Go into the world (the next room, the coffee shop, traffic, work) and be kind first.
No preconceptions, no judgments, no assumptions.
Give criticism a time out.
Fresh eyes, rapt attention, a listening heart.
Beyond self into communion, connection, love.
Consider alternatives, opposites, upside downs.
Twists, turns, mystery, unknowing.
Unfolding, flowing, darkness, greys, brilliant colors, light.
Choose learning and expanding over certainty and being “right.”
Scatter joy and hope, leave peace to take root and bloom.
Be kind. Repeat.

“Remember, there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.” — Scott Adams

A Bright Spot

“There’s a bright spot in every dark cloud.” – Bruce Beresford

“Wisdom. . .is knowing what you have to accept.”― Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose

No doubt, it’s been a long winter.
It’s hard to be positive about 30s in April, on the cusp of May.
Another circumstance we can’t do anything about, out of our control.
Collectively, we’ve had a lot of those the past two years, stuff out of our control.
The one true thing in our control is our reaction and response.
Do we allow them to take our joy hostage or do we free the hostages, inviting and entering gratitude in all seasons?
A personal daily choice.
I am going to keep choosing gratitude, albeit imperfectly.
There’s room on the team of joy if you want to join.
We have plenty of spectators, critics, cynics.
Humor, delight, wonder are playing first, second and third base.
We need some pitchers and a catchers.
Participate and play the game, it’s a short one.

“Humor is a prelude to faith and laughter is the beginning of prayer.”— Reinhold Niebuhr

%d bloggers like this: