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Sometimes

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Sometimes
if you move carefully
through the forest,

breathing
like the ones
in the old stories,

who could cross
a shimmering bed of leaves
without a sound,

you come
to a place
whose only task

is to trouble you
with tiny
but frightening requests,

conceived out of nowhere
but in this place
beginning to lead everywhere.

Requests to stop what
you are doing right now,
and

to stop what you
are becoming
while you do it,

questions
that can make
or unmake
a life,

questions
that have patiently
waited for you,

questions
that have no right
to go away.

~David Whyte~
River Flow: New and Selected Poems

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This week’s inquiry … questions designed to be experienced rather than thought through …

What would innocence bring to this thought, this person, this situation?

Innocence waits for nothing,  It has no opinion of your story, holds no grudges, makes no conclusion, knows nothing of your suffering.  Innocence doesn’t age or remember.  It holds no deep pockets filled with unending rules.  It carries only one inherent knowing: it knows the wholeness.  ~Bethie

When you know every thought of attack towards anyone is a sword that is dropping on your own head, and when you know that your willingness to see the innocence in another person, then therein lies your capacity to experience your own innocence. ~Marianne Williamson

I could spend my day with my history and my pain and my failures.  I could also live the day as a blessing waiting to be unwrapped by my eyes and my grateful heart.  Given the choice to drown in a sea of pain or float effortlessly on a sea of bliss — hmmm, which shall I choose?  It’s a no brainer, right?  But ah, that history can be seductive!  And yet, each day, patiently and silently God draws aside the curtain.  I awake, I peek around that curtain with all the innocence and curiosity of a newborn, because that’s what the newness of this day and this opportunity really represents.  ~Bethie

may the tide
that is entering even now
the lip of our understanding
carry you out
beyond the face of fear
may you kiss
the wind then turn from it
certain that it will
love your back     may you
open your eyes to water
water waving forever
and may you in your innocence
sail through this to that

~Lucille Clifton (at St. Mary’s)  Blessing the Boats

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I’ve mentioned before that I used to subscribe to “this week’s powerful question”.  Somehow I seem to have fallen off the email train, but undeterred I now make up my own questions.  These are not designed to be readily answered.  Some of them have a built-in alarm clock that snaps me awake out of the seductive trance we all fall prey to from time to time.  Some of them are inspiring, and some of them hang there and remain a question that can’t be answered by conditioned mind, more by the willingness to openly explore how it may operate in my own life.  And then the further readiness, to gently navigate back on the self-friendly path.

So … today’s inquiry:

Who am I without my history?

Let’s try that again:

Who am I without my Hi-Story?

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I received this week’s powerful question:

What am I taking too seriously?

My first thought upon reading that, was … how much time have you got?  :-)

Yet, my next thought was another question:

What can I hold lightly today?

I can hold lightly exactly everything I am willing to today.  I can come to willingness when there is nothing left but willingness, those “Jesus take the wheel” moments, or I could allow my willingness right here and now.

Here, where I hold it all lightly, that tightness in my chest begins to open up.  I can breathe more freely.  I become aware that I am standing in the field of possibilities now, where the options are limitless and this too shall pass, is … as always, inevitable.

What can you hold lightly today?

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