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Posts tagged ‘Peace’

Go Easy

“When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” – Lao Tzu

When your rules don’t make sense;

When you realize that your old stories are old;

When you are done with the BS;

When trying to make sense of that which makes no sense gets exhausting;

Stop;

Go easy on yourself, the world and circumstances;

Hold tight to sunrise and sunset,

To seasons;

To cycles;

To mystery;

To unknowing;

To resilience;

To light;

To strength, joy and delight in the ordinary.

Go easy.

Nature Speaks

“In every walk in with nature one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir

“By discovering nature, you discover yourself.” – Maxime Lagacé

When the wind blows and your roots loosen, I will catch you, hold you, carry you;
In quiet and repose, seasons and rhythms unfold;
Unassuming and grand;
Humble and confident;
See both the forest and the trees, duality, beauty and insight;
Close up for the detail, draw back for patterns, for perspective;
Nature speaks, listen.

“Nature is pleased with simplicity. And nature is no dummy.” – Isaac Newton

Keep Your Head Up

As we make our way to transitioning to what’s next in a few weeks, glimpsing through the crack of the locked door, the slow opening, returning but not returning, accepting and leaning into different and ongoing uncertainty, remind yourself that you and we have made it this far and we will continue to do so because we have grit, resolve and rapt awareness of this present moment. If this time right now doesn’t change you/us forever, absolutely nothing will. And the change can and should be for the better after we stabilize what we can, let go of the unnecessary and grasp possibility.

We’ve made it through ongoing uncertainty, home bound, deafening and heartening quiet, plenty of walks and runs, caring for parents and kids, lots of video meetings wearing jeans, meeting our coworkers’ kids, dogs and cats and commuting 10 feet to our office.

The debate continues, a combination of health sciences, political science, positioning and best guesses on how and when. Rushing back or staying put. Or somewhere in between where we find most of life, not on extremes but right in the middle, in duality, balancing contradiction, honing in on clarity.

Our collective whole has been in a master class on empathy, community and authenticity. If we choose to have the learning stick and change us, we will be more grateful, kind, better listeners, compassionate, comfortable in quiet, peaceful, mindful of where we spend our time and with who.

While the commercials ruined and watered down the “we’re in this together” so buy stuff, we really are in this together. And together, we will move through to what’s next on the #otherside.

Carry the lessons of this rare time forward, weave new habits of family game time, long walks with the dogs, rest, hobbies and art, saying hi to strangers. Be more patient and understanding of your fellow fragile, strong, resilient sisters and brothers.

More change will come, which is the only certainty that ever really existed before this turned our world upside down. Look up and watch how the light breaks through the clouds. It will be a long road but together we will navigate this uncharted territory together. Keep your head up!

Sit, Quietly, Rest

“We will be more successful in all our endeavors if we can let go of the habit of running all the time, and take little pauses to relax and re-center ourselves. And we’ll also have a lot more joy in living.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

“Every person needs to take one day away.  A day in which one consciously separates the past from the future.  Jobs, family, employers, and friends can exist one day without any one of us, and if our egos permit us to confess, they could exist eternally in our absence.  Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for.  Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us.”― Maya Angelou, Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now

We need one large adirondack chair right now. Take a break from nonstop Zoom meetings, the news, from projects, from the urgency and uncertainty of these moments. Book time on your calendar for actual thinking, creativity and reflection – the recipe out of this mess.

Simply rest, relax and ground yourself in ease and no expectations. Release worry, overthinking and predicting. Just laid back and restored to enter tomorrow refreshed and ready for whatever presents itself.

We are bigger and stronger than these circumstances. Stop trying to fill the space and time with more meaningless activity. Listen and enter mere being. Sit, quiet, rest.

Over

Hope over fear.
Love over hate.
Joy over despair.
Light over darkness.
Peace over turmoil.
Kindness over spite.
Empathy over self.
Generosity over hoarding.
Ease over struggle.
Silence over noise.
Confidence over questioning.
Awe over indifference.
Deep over shallow.
Us over me.
Mystery over understanding.
Gratitude over complaint.
Rest over tumult.
Acceptance over shame.
Sweet over bitter.
Wonder over knowing.
Awake over sleep.
Slow over rushed.
Heaven over hell.

Present over past.
Present over future.
Just Present.

All is overcome today.
Resurrection over the Cross.
The playbook for living today already written.
The last word.
Knees to ground.

Happy Easter.

Crystal Clear

Glorious, awestruck, taken-aback, stupendous, magical, delightful.

When is the last time that you’ve used one of these words to describe something, anything. An activity, a conversation, a sunset. Gliding across the snow last night with fresh snow falling was glorious. That’s the word I used this morning as I wondered why my back was sore and then remembered the source.

We should be on the hunt daily for reasons to use theses descriptors. They are much better than busy, tired and overwhelmed which is more of our reality in our fast pursuit to nowhere. Faster, “better,” productive.

The problem when we use these words sparingly, for the vacation, for fictional “someday” when things are perfect, when we lose 20 pounds, when this person gets out of the way, when circumstances change, is that we are missing daily joy that is abundant and available to all of us despite the excuses and hurdles that we put in our own way. Pursue awestruck in what already is, not what will be when all of the conditions fall into place.

Life is messy. Relationships, death, illness, politics, things that didn’t work out according to our plan. And right in the middle of the mess is capacity for joy and contentment within, waiting to be called out to play, dance and sing, loudly.

We choose daily what we put in the forefront, on center stage. We do, no one else. That’s powerful and daunting when we can’t blame someone or something else. We have the power to shift our attention from our self-inflicted problems to our reservoir of light within.

Foster, feed and bring that inner joy within to fruition so you expand your vocabulary and starting using glorious, awestruck, taken-aback, stupendous, magical, delightful on a regular basis

At the beginning of the year, I made a new “intention” bracelet that I wear almost every day with the word “clarity” on it. That is what I am seeking. What we seek actively, we find.

Not right. Not left. Not right. Not wrong. Not more. Not less. Clarity for what already is in this very moment.

Course Correction

“Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.”― Ernest Hemingway

I went to quite a few funerals in 2019. 2020 is kicking off with two this week. Our time is limited and precious. Wasting it complaining, in unforgiveness, in being “right” only harvests regret and remorse. As the pastor said today, death pushes us to think about our own life and can prompt us to make a “course correction.” That certainly is the gift if we choose to open it.

Each of us has the choice to make a course correction. We can’t go back, but we can change the direction of where we go forward. Apologize, forgive and forget before it’s too late. Do something you’ve always wanted to – take the trip, write the book, take an art class.

Life is finite so make the most of your moments. Let all the stuff go that really doesn’t matter and enjoy this day. Don’t wait for a funeral to make your course correction.

Mustard Seed

“Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” – Psalm 46:10

He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” – Matthew 17:20

The Cathedral of Saint Paul was built between 1907-1915. Eight years with none of the equipment and tools that we have today. The workmanship is magnificent. Those who started in 1907 had the vision, the faith of a mustard seed followed by a heavy dose of fortitude and patience to finish this national treasury. Most days, we don’t have the patience to put eight minutes into something much less eight years.

The Cathedral is two blocks from the end of the Twin Cities Marathon and 10-mile run. During my three marathons especially, I would visualize seeing that beautiful sacred place many times along the long path. And when I saw the tip of the dome, I knew that I really was almost done.

A tiny seed planted takes hold, carries us along and mountains are moved. So often we try too hard to figure it out or do more. Rather than more activity, plotting and pining, we just need to be still long enough to hear that still small voice directing the next step.

Not knowing is o.k., believing in greater things than ourselves is required to live contently with deep joy rooted in optimism.

Go move mountains today, not by doing, but by faith. A mustard seed, that’s it.

The Pond, The River, The Harbor

Mornings at Blackwater by Mary Oliver, Red Bird

“For years, every morning, I drank
from Blackwater Pond.
It was flavored with oak leaves and also, no doubt,
the feet of ducks.

And always it assuaged me
from the dry bowl of the very far past.

What I want to say is
that the past is the past,
and the present is what your life is,
and you are capable
of choosing what that will be,
darling citizen.

So come to the pond,
or the river of your imagination,
or the harbor of your longing,

and put your lips to the world.
And live
your life.”

Fill your mind and heart with beauty and light to stay positive, to live positive and to never succumb to the magnet of negativity. Guard your heart, keep it soft. Fill your thoughts with love, forgiveness, compassion and understanding – those things that make absolutely no sense and are not warranted. And yet there is no peace without them.

Fight the good fight and live YOUR life. No regrets, unrelenting joy and a peace that passes all understanding.

Strivings Cease, Prayer Ensues, Peace Enters

“If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.” – Meister Eckhart

A simple glance, a quiet moment, a sliver of pause prompts a prayer. Of gratitude. Of depth. Of awareness. Sacred, holy and awe-filled moments surround us awaiting to be released into our very being. In play. In joy. In letting go of all that we carry that is not ours. A small, soothing voice of calm. Strivings cease, peace enters with ease. Amen.

“Drop Thy still dews of quietness,
Till all our strivings cease;
Take from our souls the strain and stress.
And let our ordered live confess
The beauty of Thy peace.

Breathe through the hearts of our desire
Thy coolness and Thy balm;
Let sense be dumb, let flesh retire;
Speak through the earthquake,
wind, and fire.
O still, small Voice of calm.”
– John G. Whittier hymn, Dear Lord and Father of Mankind

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