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Posts Tagged ‘peace’

lbugs

Today went very quickly for me, yet didn’t seem to leave anything of itself in a meaningful way.

Looking for meaning in that, I have only this haiku by Issa:

A giant firefly:
that way, this way, that way, this –
and it passes by.
Issa

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labyrinth2_poe1x1

This morning when I found out that David Bowie had passed away, I hoped for a peaceful transition for him.

I then laughed to myself, as the song I thought of most was “As the World Falls Down” from Labyrinth.  My sister had the soundtrack back when it was new, and the music was so dreamlike and soothing, I used it to help me go to sleep.  It was the first song I learned the lyrics to, as I started to sing it to myself over and over in my head when I had a hard time dropping off.

I still do, actually.

Throughout the day, I’ve caught myself thinking about the lyrics again with a fresh mind. I’ve sung it to myself to soothe myself to sleep for so long, I no longer hear it as the seductive love song it was written as, but as a call of comfort from my inner self.

For all the times I have faced upheaval and chaos and pain, I’ve found peaceful refuge in words such as:

As the pain sweeps through,
Makes no sense for you.
Every thrill is gone.
Wasn’t too much fun at all,
But I’ll be there for you-ou-ou
As the world falls down.

I owe so much of my moments of finding-calm to those lyrics. May the man who wrote and sang those words now know peace, as well.

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I wanted to break my latest hiatus by letting you know I’ve been thinking of you. I know I haven’t reached that many people with my words in the grand scheme of things. That said, I do believe that those whom I have touched have in turn touched the lives of others, just as I continue to share the gifts of insight and love that others have given me. We are sharing the human experience, and we can’t stop our influence from spreading beyond our reach.

It is my sincerest goal that my life bring more love, more peace, and more joy to the lives of those around me than I would have thought possible. And that, through enjoying those blessings we share, those lives then shine their light forward to illuminate the dark spaces of others. In this way, the light and love that I have received with may continue that work throughout our world.

Please, take a moment to remember something that is special to you, that warms your heart. Remember a thought, an experience, a talent or a dream that helps you feel your spark inside. Take three deep, slow breaths, savoring this moment of precious peace. Feel the sacred beauty of nature, and of the human heart, savoring that precious unity-point where the outside world touches your skin. Remember we are one people, sharing one planet, and enjoy a moment of gratitude for the opportunity to be a part of it.

Take another moment, please, to experience the positive, warm peace that dwells within the stillness. Form a memory of what that feels like. And from now on, whenever possible, call up that moment of peace to your conscious attention, to help you through a hectic time, or even to periodically brighten your day.

As you practice this, you can’t help but create a positive influence for the world you inhabit. May that warm embrace of the joyful stillness come easier and easier for you, until it shapes your every day.

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I live in an odd culture. Americans are encouraged to prize individuality on a broad scale, with our celebrities and our icons. Yet we are also individually discouraged from lifting ourselves up, as we are accused of being arrogant, and there are many who will try to knock or pull us down.

We are taught that each life has meaning, but are then encouraged to act in ways that disregards that precious value in each living being. We say that all people are unique, but then are ridiculed if we stress that each individual is special in a way that is separate from being “more than” or “better than” another person.

Men and women experience these pressures differently, but we each are subject to this push-pull of “try harder” and “don’t try so hard.” None of this seems designed to help us discover who that unique being is inside of us. Few examples help us see that it’s not only possible to meet and make friends with this contradictory, mysterious inner chorus of thoughts and feelings inside us… it’s the only way to connect with the truest friend we can ever have.

American culture is very off-balance because we are continually distracted from finding our center. For whatever reason, the pushing and pulling and chaos and stress is a constant force, keeping our eyes and ears focused on the outside, rather than inward. Yet just as on a centrifuge you must pull your arms and legs close to your body to keep still along the wall, in this spiral of life we must pull our thoughts and feelings close to our selves to find stillness.

Once we have found our center, we can enjoy that sense of perspective that helps us truly see one another, as ourselves. Once we connect with that stillness, we have an easier time recognizing that same spark in others, valuing their core as much as we value our own. We aren’t in competition to find that precious gift of peace, as we’ve discovered that peace can only be created from within.

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I wish that your life will feel greater, more complete, because of the day you’ve had today.

I wish that you will feel closer to your goals, if only by moments, and if only by understanding more of what it will take to keep moving toward them.

I wish that you will have a full minute of presence, with several full breaths of air you’re grateful to have the chance to breathe.

I wish you to know peace — if not completely, then just enough to remember what it’s like to pause within the moment.

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I’m traveling for the second time in as many months, and in another month I’ll be out for another few nights. This time, my toddler is having a harder time with me being away, and it’s reminding me how I’ve gotten used to a particular place of being.

I mean this in more than just physical location. Even with my daily awareness practice of my Zen Year goals, I still have settled into a feeling of being in a routine. Even though it’s not accomplishing more than three quarters of what I’d like it to accomplish, this external routine has infused itself into my expectations, and my sense of place.

The toughest part of traveling has been breaking these patterns, of suspending these feelings of knowing what and “where” to expect. That has also been the most beneficial. It has been snapping me out of the daydream a bit, reminding me of how and where I like to live.

In the past, I wasn’t such a creature of habit. Life was pretty variable, and I flowed right along with it. Then different sets of patterns and samenesses took hold, some of them pretty grinding. I settled in. Somewhere along the way, change ceased being my one constant.

That’s really not such a bad thing, but in the meantime a visceral part of me has started to center my sense of place on the expectations, these patterns, these routines. It has taken these extreme suspensions of routine to shake that part of me up, reminding it of who and where I am. I am a creature of both change and habit, of ambition and restfulness, of expectation and surprise. I am also the product of my thoughts and feelings, which color and shape the world I experience.

There is no “place” I can expect to be, except in the space I carry with me. Whoever I meet, wherever I go, I experience it through the context of that space inside me.

As I remember this, I can take a deep breath in this strange air. I am at peace.

I am home.

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One of my common themes is Letting Go. I just realized I’m getting a very minor, though literal lesson in that today.

Our refrigerator/freezer has just stopped cooling. Well, as it happens, it had sort of stopped a day or so ago, and now it’s quiet obvious as the leftover “chill” has faded. We don’t keep a huge amount of frozen food and try to cycle through the produce/etc. before it goes bad, but that timeframe has now shortened due to the loss of cold.

I’ve had to throw out a lentil & sweet potato sauce I wasn’t done with, and we’re now eating as much of the produce as we can while we sort out how to get cooling back. The frozen veggies we just stocked up on will be meals for the next couple of days. Everything else, well…

When something’s time has come, it doesn’t matter whether I feel that I’m done with it. It’s done with being available to me, so I may as well let it go.

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Feeling clear and light.
I think: have I touched the sun,
or has it touched me?

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I’ve had a long, but much easier day in my 30 Days Without Anger (or frustration) practice.  It’s made me very introspective, and I had a hard time sitting down to write some thoughts here, especially after all I wrote yesterday.

But as I’m getting ready to sleep, I started thinking about how taking a few moments to love and accept myself despite my mistakes, and forgiving my own ineptitudes… how it helps lessen the impulses of frustration and anger.

I’ll have more to share on that idea tomorrow or soon, but in the meantime, I thought perhaps it might get your own mind going as to what it could mean to you.

 

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This morning when I realized it was the National Day of Prayer, I went on to Twitter to share a prayer an hour, as close to the hour as I could.  I did a pretty decent job (of the schedule, though I feel pretty good about the prayers too).

For today’s thoughts, I want to share these prayers with you, and sincerely direct them for your personal good:

  • May our hearts know peace, that we may share pure Love one to another, free of judgment or fear for who & what they choose.
  • May we lovingly forgive ourselves our faults, and with love forgive the faults we envision are in others.
  • May Love for Truth give us courage to live according to the wisdom in our own hearts, & let others live by theirs.
  • May our hearts be opened in love and support for those who are suffering, without condemning the what & the why.
  • May we have courage to accept when we’ve been wronged, seeking reparation & healing through love, not vengeance.
  • May our hearts expand to hold all humanity as family, sharing our generous lovingkindness with all who need it.
  • May we have patience & understanding for others, especially those we’d disapprove of or disagree with.
  • May we receive more than we need, that we may enjoy a little extra & share the rest with others in need.
  • May we have acceptance for our past, courage for our present, and hope for our future, no matter what.
  • May we allow anger and frustration to exist without overtaking us, letting them guide us to solutions.
  • May we not shrink from sadness, whether ours or another’s, but embrace it with patience and love.
  • May life bring us opportunities to feel the warm glow of love, and teach us to shine forth its light.
  • If we feel like sweating the small stuff, may we indulge in recreational griping and lighten our load.
  • When it’s time to rest, may we fully relax, allowing the earth to bear the weight of our burdens.

And most of all, may your day bring you joy, and your night bring you peace.

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