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Archive for August, 2009

Horizon

“This being human is a guest house.  Every morning a new arrival.  A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor…” excerpt from the Guest House by Rumi

Such a beautiful expression Rumi makes here.  What if we treated everything that we experienced as a welcome guest?  What if we did this even and especially with the contrast, the challenges we experience and the so called “negative” emotion that often comes with it?  What if we treated it all like a guest, a visitor and a welcome one at that?  Why a welcome one?  Because everything at its core has something to offer us and when left unresisted, a new expansion lies within easy reach on the horizon.

Thich Nhat Hanh also said: “Feelings, whether of compassion or irritation, should be welcomed, recognized, and treated on an absolutely equal basis; because both are ourselves. The tangerine I am eating is me. The mustard greens I am planting are me. I plant with all my heart and mind.  I clean this teapot with the kind of attention I would have were I giving the baby Buddha or Jesus a bath. Nothing should be treated more carefully than anything else. In mindfulness, compassion, irritation, mustard green plant, and teapot are all sacred.”

Thich Nhat Hanh and Rumi are centuries and countries apart and yet each with a similar viewpoint, one calls it all sacred, the other a welcome guest. Imagine if you were feeling irritation, if you regarded it as sacred.  Just take a breath into it or whatever it is you are feeling, no pushing it away, it’s sacred now.  You’re alive, this alive-ness, this human-ness is so sacred.  You get to experience it all, anything and everything.  Now, know that none of it is wrong.  You may bring compassion, wisdom and understanding to all that you experience at any time.  And the moment that you do, is the instant that you know none of this life of yours is wrong.  All of it is sacred.  All of it is holy.  Can you feel that – how soft, how easy, how self-honoring that is?  I sure do.  Now, imagine bringing this awareness to all your sacred guests.   Welcome them, as Rumi said: “be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”

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sunrise_apollo

It is possible that God says every morning, ‘Do it again’ to the sun; and every evening, ‘Do it again’ to the moon.
~G. K. Chesterton

And who was it who said: either everything is a miracle or nothing at all is?  I favor everything is a miracle.  What if we approached everything with that sense of wide eyed wonder, with a sense of openness and curiosity?

Imagine a possession of yours that you take for granted, it’s always there, you don’t give it much thought.  Now imagine that it was lost.  Years and years have gone by and suddenly you find it again.  You approach it now with that sense of reverence.  It’s a treasure now, isn’t it?  Something to be thankful for.  Once taken for granted, now a sense of gratitude washes over you.

Imagine if we lived seeing with those new eyes of reverence, wonder and gratitude everyday.  Imagine, indeed.

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winding-road-gem21Image Locale

This week a wise teacher reminded me of the old adage: all roads lead
to Rome.

I remember that at one time all roads did lead to Rome.  But why do
we still say this today and what does it mean about life and the living
of it?

I believe it reveals that there are no wrong turns in life.  How could
there be, in a world where everything is in a continual state of unfoldment?

And if all roads lead to Rome and there aren’t any wrong turns then we’re
always on the right path for us in the moment.

We may meander a bit, as most roads do.  And that meandering is really
the stuff of life.  It is also said that life is in the details.  Life and living it,
isn’t just in the straight, unfettered path.  It’s also in the crooked one.  It’s
in all the turns that we once thought were wrong turns.  It’s in all the side
trips and meanderings.  It’s even in the “dead ends” as we come to remember
there are no spiritual dead ends; there’s always and infinitely something more.

May I now remember always there are no wrong turns, as all roads do lead
to my Rome.  No big hurry here, I’ve got all the time in the world.

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innerbeing

Image Locale

Fear is that place of disconnection where you decide
to tough it out all on your own.

But peeking around the door,
is that Inner Being of yours.
Saying come dear one, I’m here with you.
Here I am. I’m always here. I am Love.

When you are afraid, you don’t know me.

I am the sun peeking through the clouds.

When you are afraid, you look down, you don’t see me.

Look up, look around, see me now.
I am here. Feel me now. I have not left you.
I’m always here for you.

Don’t look for me in your worries, I won’t follow.

In that smile of yours, the one that just beams from the inside,
that’s the beginning of where I am.  Come be with me.
I am always here for you.

With love from one Inner Being to another…

Bethie

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Heart Songs

musicheart

There are many things in life
that will catch your eye,
but only a few will catch your heart …
Pursue those.

~Anonymous~

What catches your heart today?

What if you did something every day
which catches your heart and makes
your heart sing?

What if you set aside time for just that
every day?

Does it sound like a recipe for inner joy?

It does just that for me. And I’m worth
feeling this inner joy and so are you.

Your heart, it has this enduring
voice that quietly beckons you to it.

Are you listening?

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stillness

 

A few weeks ago one of our cats, Angel, transitioned.  Then last week another one of our cats, Muffy, was missing.  I was upset, angry really, I was not going to lose two cats a few weeks apart.  And I was jumping to all sorts of conclusions about what had happened to him.  In this frame of mind, I went out canvassing the neighborhood with his picture, knocking on doors asking – had you seen him?  I crossed the street to a home on the edge of a cul de sac and walked up to the doorway.  As I rang the doorbell, a sign to my left caught my eye.  It read: Be still and know that I  AM.  I just sort of froze in the moment and really took in the meaning of that sign and the message I felt the Universe was conveying to me in the moment.  All my action oriented efforts from this place of resistance will not bring Muffy home.

I stopped knocking on doors and went home to take the message in literally.  I meditated for a little bit and then I went about my day in mindfulness practice. Fully present with everything I was doing no matter how trivial it was.  No more banging anything into place.  I had conceded as much before that there was very little the locally focused me could accomplish and even less when approached with a resistant stance.  Now I was walking the walk.  No knee-jerk reactive thoughts, just being in the moment.  All judgment and conclusions suspended, I was at rest in still waters.  It also helped that I’d been actively doing a mindfulness practice so that it was easy to return to when I had found myself floundering.

Muffy walked in the door a few hours later much to our glee!  He was a little skinnier than usual but otherwise unscathed.  We exchanged kisses.  He is our one cat who loves to kiss and we fed him lots of tuna.

Florence Scovel Shinn has written: my ship comes in over a calm sea.  Makes sense, doesn’t it?  I thank Universe/Field/Spirit for the reminder earlier in that day – Be still and know that I AM.  The Universe is continually in conversation with me; this time I was taking note and listening.

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alpha_and_omega_copy

So this is it.  You missed the memo somehow.  The one that came with that elusive owner’s manual for This Being Human.  And now it seems there was a quota of thoughts you were given.  You are down to your last thought.  What shall it be?

Stop for a moment and take a deep breath and let that last thought come.  What is it?  How do you feel as you are thinking it?  Do you want to jump for joy?  Do you feel like sinking down into that thought?  Did your shoulders relax?  Did you breathe a little more freely?  However it felt in the body, remember it and then let it go.

This is the moment, the alpha and omega.  It’s a do over for your life, starting now.  Whatever that last thought was: now begin there and go forward carrying with you the memory of how it felt.  Remembering now that the thoughts you give yourself to are precious just like you, choose the ones that support and uplift you.  Choose the ones that sustain a warm and inviting self-rapport.  Practice this and your outer world will rise to meet your inner world.

What was my last thought?  Very simply – thank you.  How did it feel?  It felt as if a burst of energy surged through my body and I wanted to rush out the door and greet everything with those two words: thank you!  Now, this is where I begin.  And to my readers – thank *you* all so much.

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