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Posts tagged ‘Peace’

Light Burns Fog

“Silence at the proper season is wisdom, and better than any speech.” – Plutarch

“Derive happiness in oneself from a good day’s work, from illuminating the fog that surrounds us.” – Henri Matisse

On my run this morning, it was difficult to see too far ahead with the looming fog and damp cold. As I was finishing, the sun started to burn through the fog. Light always burns off the fog of uncertainty, negativity and judgment.

Cling to the light of hope, faith and resilience, especially now when the fog is thick with ongoing pandemic uncertainty, a mean season of dirty politics on both sides and hatred rooted in stereotypes rather than reality.

It was a beautiful end to the day with sun shining bright and brilliant. Choose light. Never take optimism for granted or underestimate her power to transform the world. Actively choose light over the fog.

On my way out for a walk tonight, my neighbor told me that she had the police over today because someone shredded her American flag and she was afraid. Stop the rhetoric and hatred! History lesson – the very first amendment is free speech. Speak yours and allow others to speak theirs without judgment, shaming or violence.

Go vote. Regardless of the results of the election in November, live a good life each day by contributing your best and offering kindness, understanding and empathy. Enough is enough. Build a life of your own that you will be proud of when you have to take account for it and stay in your own lane.

We have enough fog. Cast light.

“Without freedom of thought, there can be no such thing as wisdom – and no such thing as public liberty without freedom of speech.”- Benjamin Franklin

Drift and Observe

“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

“Meditation is an attempt to stop rowing and let the water of life go clear, so you can see through to the bottom of things. Let’s try this now. Put down your oars and drift. Center yourself and breathe slowly. Whatever the day holds can wait. The first oar to leave alone is your mind. Inhale and exhale deeply. The second oar to ungrip is the oar of fear and worry. Inhale and exhale slowly. Simply breathe and let the water of your life settle and calm. Let your breathing quiet the ripples. Let the water of all life settle and calm. Look through the calm, not searching for anything, just seeing what’s there.” — The Book of Soul: 52 Paths to Living What Matters, Mark Nepo

Stop rowing. Let the water settle so you can observe, listen and be present. Our thoughts, opinions, judgments either contract or expand us. When we drift and observe, we choose expansion and mystery.

Dare to be quiet long enough to awaken your senses to see to the bottom of things. Put the paddles down each day to cultivate clarity and joy. We cast light by allowing light in.

Perch

“Everything that happens happens as it should, and if you observe carefully, you will find this to be so.” – Marcus Aurelius

To sit quietly and observe. No judgment. No sound. May we all find the peace to do as the bird does on a soft quiet morning on the tip of a branch. To find depth in being and seeing, in understanding and presence.

“Be like the bird who, pausing in her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing she hath wings.” – Victor Hugo

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

Peace Within

“I know, to banish anger altogether from one’s breast is a difficult task. It cannot be achieved through pure personal effort. It can be done only by God’s grace.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“The meaning of life. The wasted years of life. The poor choices of life. God answers the mess of life with one word: ‘grace.’” – Max Lucado

This morning’s walk along the river in St. Paul was noticeably quieter than last week amidst the mourning, anger and destruction of parts of the Twin Cities in response to George Floyd’s death.

There were two people sculling in narrow boats on the river with ease and grace. It was beautiful, quiet and peaceful to witness. As I watched the fluid movement, I thought if only each of one of us had that peace, grace and ease within, we wouldn’t be where we are right now.

We didn’t get to what happened to George Floyd overnight. It’s been ingrained in organizations, systems, in bias, hatred and misunderstanding on all sides. It was the tipping point that screamed – ENOUGH! Any human who watched that 8+ minute video was and is sickened and saddened. How do we get to this point in humanity to be so numb, so callous, so hollow?

Before we cast judgment and damnation on organizations, all police officers and others “different” from us, may we each look within ourselves first. To rend our hearts and souls, so we foster love and peace that demands permanent and lasting change that transforms the world beyond anger, hopelessness and hatred.

When we anchor our future on love, justice, courage, peace and empathy, never again will we witness the horror of the past few weeks and decades. May history stop repeating itself and may we create a present and future where we listen, lift each other up and rise above the noise, creating a beautiful world that we have the capacity to create right now. No excuses.

This is my prayer, my hope and my resolve. We must do this together. The journey starts within.

“When you are spiritually connected, you are not looking for occasions to be offended, and you are not judging and labeling others. You are in a state of grace in which you know you are connected to God and thus free from the effects of anyone or anything external to yourself.” – Wayne Dyer

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

Calm

“Oh, these vast, calm, measureless mountain days, days in whose light everything seems equally divine, opening a thousand windows to show us God.” – John Muir

“We must go beyond the constant clamor of ego, beyond the tools of logic and reason, to the still, calm place within us: the realm of the soul.” – Deepak Chopra

It was a beautiful warm day with sunny skies offering some moments of reprieve from the heaviness of this week as we try to prepare for tonight with thousands of anarchists coming into Minnesota to not honor George Floyd but to continue to burn and loot the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. This afternoon, Minnesotans gathered in peaceful protest to truly honor George Floyd and demand justice.

On a walk tonight before curfew, there was a calm. Flowers reminded me of joy and beauty which is not in the forefront right now but remains and offers hope. When we enter calm and honest conversation, we can learn the timeless lessons of love and understanding. Praying for calm tonight.

“You practice mindfulness, on the one hand, to be calm and peaceful. On the other hand, as you practice mindfulness and live a life of peace, you inspire hope for a future of peace.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

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!

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