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Posts Tagged ‘Surrender’

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motherearth31

 

Today’s Blessing: today my practice is to surrender, no, not just surrender — *swoon* at the perfection that is back of all things. All belief in illusions fall away here.

The ripe fragrance of perfection wafts through the air, she leads you to that pure and eternal essence in the heart of Mother Earth. She bids you to lie here on her sacred ground, breathe deep, feel her roots, feel that deep support that never wavers or gives way.

She does not keep time or score, and she does not judge that I have. She transcends the root of all pain.

Today I stop wishing for something else to be different, I surrender and join her.

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Artist Josephine Wall

josephine-wall-flight-to-freedom

Willing to experience aloneness,
I discover connection everywhere;
Turning to face my fear,
I meet the warrior who lives within;
Opening to my loss,
I gain the embrace of the universe;
Surrendering into emptiness,
I find fullness without end.
Each condition I flee from pursues me,
Each condition I welcome transforms me
And becomes itself transformed
Into its radiant jewel-like essence.
I bow to the one who has made it so,
Who has crafted this Master Game.
To play it is purest delight;
To honor its form–true devotion.

– Jennifer Welwood~

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When They Sleep

sleeping

When They Sleep

All people are children when they sleep.
There’s no war in them then.
They open their hands and breathe
in that quiet rhythm heaven has given them.

They pucker their lips like small children
and open their hands halfway,
soldiers and statesmen, servants and masters.
The stars stand guard
and a haze veils the sky,
a few hours when no one will do anybody harm.

If only we could speak to one another then
when our hearts are half-open flowers.
Words like golden bees
would drift in.
— God, teach me the language of sleep.

~ Rolf Jacobsen ~

(The Roads Have Come to an End Now, translation by Robert Hedin)

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Can you accept the is-ness of this moment,
and not confuse it with a story the mind has created around it?

Surrender comes when you no longer ask:
why is this happening to me?

Even within the seemingly most unacceptable and painful situation, is
concealed a deeper good and within every disaster is contained the
seed of Christ.

…accepting the seemingly unacceptable,
and thus finding the peace that surpasses all understanding

Acceptance of the unacceptable,
is the greatest source of praise in this world.

When you fully accept that you don’t know, you give up
struggling to find answers with the limited thinking mind,
and that is when the greater intelligence can operate through you.

Sometimes surrender means giving up trying to understand,
and becoming comfortable with not knowing.

Surrender, one could say is the inner transition from resistance to acceptance,
from no to yes.

When you surrender your sense of self shifts from being identified
with the reaction or mental judgment
to being the space around the reaction or judgment.

It is a shift from identification with form, thought or the emotion
to being and recognizing yourself as that which has no form.
Spacious Awareness.

Whatever you accept completely will take you to peace,
including the acceptance that you cannot accept that you are in resistance.

Leave life alone
Let it be.

~Eckhart Tolle~

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I’ve gone back to finding my religion again, loosely translated that means I am believing something about my precious oldest daughter that is painful for me to believe.  Lately, every day I pick up ACIM and let a page fall open and speak to me. Today it opened to Lesson 54.  All ACIM quotes will appear in bold, the remainder will be my comments.

I have no neutral thoughts.

Neutral thoughts are impossible because all thoughts have power.  They will either make a false world or lead me to the real one.

Believing in my daughter’s condition is a false world.  It’s a world in which I believe she is not whole.  It’s a world of separation both by my belief in the condition and by my suffering with these thoughts about it.

I see no neutral things.

Let me look on the world I see as the representation of my own state of mind.

Let me remember that the world I currently see represents my departure from the real world where I let my fears take hold and make manifest this false world.

I am not alone in experiencing the effects of my seeing.

I am not alone in experiencing the effects of my thoughts.

I am alone in nothing.

What a relief.

I am determined to see.

I would behold the proof that what has been done through me has enabled love to replace fear, laughter to replace tears, and abundance to replace loss.  I would look upon the real world, and let it teach me that my will and the will of God are one.

Ok, I have one bone to pick here.  “I am determined”, sounds too willful and efforting to me.  I change it to: I surrender so that the real world may be revealed to me.  I surrender so that I might know where I thought there was darkness, there is light, where I thought there was pain, there is healing, where I thought there was something to fear, there is something to love, where I thought there was something missing, I find wholeness.

I surrender to remembering I don’t have the resources to see the bigger picture.  I surrender to remembering resting in the peace and stillness of God is worth more than any niggling fear could ever reap.  I surrender to make room for every little miracle to take the place of my false perceptions.  I surrender.  Again.

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surrendering to One Mind

fills me like the early morning light expanding into the day

this still small voice inside of me is never wholly silenced

here there are no problems and therefore no solutions

no piles of good and bad, wanted and unwanted

only pure, endless absolute Love

Love without reservation

resting in the Innocence of One Mind

Now, I am Home.

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Image by Rassouli

As events unfolded through the latter part of last month, I found myself blowing into my little God Whistle asking for strength.  It was a February of change and challenges that shook me more than anything had for quite some time.  The strength did come and right beside it flowed wisdom and comfort.

I dubbed this last month a period of “Bethie finding her religion”.   There is nothing like situations that metaphorically or literally bring me to my knees to remind me I’m not in charge here and frankly, there’s very little I’m in charge of around here.  And isn’t that a relief?  If I had to rely on myself to spin the planets, orchestrate thousands of different processes in my body, raise the sun, set the tides, we’d be having a lot of chaos in the world.

Often I don’t post about the particulars of the sh*t hitting the fan in my life.  It is found in between the lines of my poems and posts.   What I do tend to write about is the place I finally land, a little stronger, a little wiser and ultimately returning to what remains when all else falls away — that all consuming Love that’s back of Everything.

I’ve not yet reached the point where I’m grateful for all the contrast and challenges when I’m in the thick of it but I know enough now to see that I’m always grateful for the delicious expansion that comes just as soon as I’m willing to take my own hands off the levers of control.  As Rainer Maria Rilke once wrote “in the difficult, are the hands that work on us”.  Yes … the hands … not my hands.  Once again I am reminded of the humility and surrender in a simple prayer: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.  Surrender is so much a part of the fabric of this Universe.  As surely as the day must surrender to the night, so must I give right of way to the “hands that work on us”.

I’m going to post some quotes from A Course in Miracles which played a big part in “Bethie finding her religion” again.  In the ensuing weeks I’ll post some lessons from the workbook.  There is much in ACIM I don’t understand but I’m comprehending more of it than I have in the past and I find the lessons to be so liberating that I believe they actually could be life-changing.

“There will come a time when images have all gone by and you will see you know not what you are.  It is to this unsealed and open mind that truth returns, unhindered and unbound.  Where concepts of the self have been laid by is truth revealed exactly as it is.  When every concept has been raised to doubt and question, and been recognized as made on no assumptions that would stand the light, then is the truth left free to enter in its sanctuary, clean and free of guilt.  There is no statement that the world is more afraid to hear than this.

I do not know the thing I am, and therefore do not
know what I am doing, where I am, or how to look
upon the world or on myself.

Yet in this learning is salvation born.  And What you are will tell you of Itself.”

Chapter 31, V:17

“The truth in you remains as radiant as a star, as pure as light, as innocent as love itself.”

Chapter 31, VI:7

This is the final passage in the text:

“And now we say “Amen.”  For Christ has come to dwell in the abode You set for Him before time was, in calm eternity.  The journey closes, ending at the place where it began.  No trace of it remains.  Not one illusion is accorded faith, and not one spot of darkness still remains to hide the face of Christ from anyone.  Thy Will is done, complete and perfectly and all creation recognizes You, and knows You as the only Source it has.  Clear in Your likeness does the Light shine forth from everything that lives and moves in You.  For we have reached where all of us are one, and we are home, where You would have us be.”

Chapter 31, VIII:12

And finally I leave you with a passage from the poem entitled Today, by one of my favorite poets: William Stafford.

“Religion has touched your throat. Not the same now, You could close your eyes and go on full of light.”

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It does not astonish or make us angry that it takes a
whole year to bring into the house three great white
peonies and two pale blue iris.  It seems altogether
right and appropriate that these glories are earned
with long patience and faith. . . . and also that it is
altogether right and appropriate that they cannot last.
Yet in our human relations we are outraged when
the supreme moments, the moments of flowering,
must be waited for. . . . and then cannot last.  We
reach a summit, and then have to go down again.

May Sarton

* * * * * *

There is so very much that we can learn from the natural world.  We are constantly surrounded by reminders of the cycles of life, the natural order of things, and if we can just recognize and appreciate the lessons of the natural world, our own lives could become so much easier and so much more comprehensible.  We live our lives in seasons much as the flowers and the trees and the animals do, and one of the reasons for which we tend to become unhappy or frustrated is because we sometimes expect to live in perpetual spring or summer, not allowing or wanting winters to be a normal, important part of our lives.

One of the reasons that spring is so beautiful in the colder areas of the world is because the flowers are coming after a long period without them–we’ve been deprived of their presence for a long time, so they mean much more to us.  We all know that for everything there is a season, but most of us would like to make those seasons longer, or to have some control over them.

But we have to let life be what it is.  Life is a beautiful experience, yet we tend to diminish its beauty by placing our false expectations on it.  One of my favorite art forms is that of ice sculpting, for the artists have a clear understanding of just how short-lived their works will be–yet they’re willing to put in hours of work to create beautiful works of art.  It’s possible that some of the most beautiful sculptures ever made have melted into puddles of water, only seen by a limited number of people for a very short time.

Enjoy the great parts of life, but enjoy them in the right here and right now, which is truly the only time that we can experience anything at all.  And when their time to leave comes, let them go with grace and dignity rather than trying to hold on to them in desperation or fear that you may never experience them again.  You will, if you simply let life be life, and accept the seasons of our lives with love and trust that they will return.

* * * * * *

For further thought:

A garden that never died eventually would weary.
Robbed of springtime, unacquainted with the
extraordinary perfume that rises from the soil after
it’s had its rest, the garden that winter doesn’t visit
is a dull place.  The return every spring of earth’s
first freshness would never be kept if not for the
frosts and rot and ripe deaths of fall.  So when I go
out from the garden for the last time in autumn,
I leave the gate open behind me.

Michael Pollan

Source: Living Life Fully

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The Friend

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innerspace

Today,  I recognized
that the jewel-like beauty
is the Presence,

Our loving confusion
the glow in which
watery clay gets
brighter than fire,
the One we call the Friend.

I begged, “Is there a way into you, a ladder?”
“Your head is the ladder,
bring it down under your feet.”

The mind, this globe of awareness,
is a starry Universe that when you push off
with your foot,
a thousand new roads
become clear,
as you yourself do
at dawn, sailing
through the light.

~Jelaluddin Rumi~
The Illuminated Rumi
Translation Coleman Barks

I love both the images this Rumi poem evokes and the metaphor for the way into Presence – that it can’t be found at the level of the thinking mind.  You must abandon the thinking mind, “push off of it”, to discover the true clarity in Presence.  Love that.

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surrender11

It’s day 3 of being aware of where I place my consciousness.  I’ve chosen
to place it on the side of what is friendly and beautiful to self and others,
and what promotes inner peace and harmony.

Did I stop thinking unfriendly, discordant thoughts?  No, I’m just more
mindful.  So much so, I could say that I am in my own corner now.  I’m my
own personal advocate for living inside a world that feels friendly, beautiful
and peaceful.

I came off of an hour long conference call this morning and could feel the
unfriendly knot I had in my abdomen and the swirling thoughts and feelings
around it.  I took my hands and balled them into fists, placed them at the
knot in my abdomen and named every unfriendly thought I was feeling:
helpless, inadequate, guilty.  Then I took my balled up hands, unfurled them
and with arms outstretched and palms to the sky – I said: Dear God, I surrender
and come to you with wholly empty hands.  My wholly empty hands that no
longer have to do another thing but release this and rest there.

So powerful this was for me that I nearly became a puddle of myself on the floor.
Deeply relaxed and relieved.  I am in my own corner and I’ve got the Universe
on my side, too.  And I remembered that today.  I remembered.  Oh, what a
relief that is.

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