“Life moves on, whether we act as cowards or heroes. Life has no other discipline to impose, if we would but realize it, than to accept life unquestioningly. Everything we shut our eyes to, everything we run away from, everything we deny, denigrate or despise, serves to defeat us in the end. What seems nasty, painful, evil, can become a source of beauty, joy, and strength, if faced with an open mind. Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such.” Henry Miller
How I wish that I could explain to those I love, how wrong the world is. I wish I could go back and erase all the messages that I passed on, some intentional, but so many more that I just inadvertently taught out of my own weaknesses and fears. I wish I could redo it, putting more emphasis on embracing it all and releasing them from any sense of shame for simply being a human being.
The world tries to write our stories with its labels and limiting beliefs. We are too weak, we are not enough, we failed, we can’t, we shouldn’t. There is nothing that happens to us that we need to fear. We can face it. We can overcome it. We can heal. Continue reading
This speaks to me today. There is so much going on in the world and people are either preparing for war, or cowering in their homes, afraid of every shadow that moves. There is talk of storing enough food, enough guns .. of being prepared to die, of having no choice but to accept you will die.
Within individual lives are storms of pain regarding relationships, addictions, financial worries, health . .. people struggle and feel isolated with the problems that greet them each morning with relentless regularity. Continue reading
“In life, we think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem. The real truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together for a time, then they fall back apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that.
Personal discovery and growth come from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.
Suffering comes from wishing things were different. Misery is self inflicted, when we are expecting the “ideal” to overcome the “actual” or needing things (or people, or places) to be different for us so we can then be happy.
Let the hard things in life break you. Let then effect you. Let them change you. Let these hard moments inform you. let this pain be your teacher. the experiences of your life are trying to tell you something about yourself. Don’t cop out on that. Don’t run away and hide under your covers. Lean into it.
What is the lesson in this wind? What is this storm trying to tell you? What will you learn if your face it with courage? With full honesty and – lean into it.” Pema Chödrön
Growing up we were that the good guys always win, and with that came an expectation that life would be fair. In fact, perhaps it made it easier to opt out of paying attention because clearly, this was just how it was. Good guys and bad guys were easily identifiable. Monsters were in scary places and mainly fairy tales that most of us left far behind us as we headed into adulthood full of idealism and dreams.
But monsters do exist outside of fairy tales and they are not always identifiable and sometimes they even show up in our lives as the fairy princess or the guy in the white hat. And, assuming that someone else was keeping life fair was the worst mistake we ever made. Continue reading
“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.” Louise Erdrich
It is so much easier to let people come and go out of our lives, teaching us the lessons they were intended to teach, learning more about ourselves when we stop looking at them as some kind of possessions we are meant to accumulate during our lives. People are energy, just like anything else in life. They are meant to flow to us, through us, and back into the world. We are not meant to hold on to them any more than we are meant to hold on to things or emotions or anything in this world. When we stop the idea that we own people, whether it be your spouse, your children or friends, life becomes much easier.
You cannot hold the wind. You can only experience it. Continue reading
Sometimes life throws a whole bunch of events at us that require immediate, fight or flight reactions. When the bombs stop falling and the dust settles, I am often dazed and confused . . . and a lot of that comes from the whirlwind of emotional reactions elicited from me. I am often left feeling like a victim of those emotions, disappointed in myself for not having been able to choose a response more in keeping with who I know I am.
It is a reminder that my emotions are not yet completely intuitive. Continue reading
As a parent you start with a bundle they hand you at the hospital. Only it takes but a few days for you to begin to see that this is not a blank page on which you get to write. This is not an empty glass you get to fill with those things that are important to you.
This child has its own ideas and needs. It has different interests and ways of being, and really, all you are is providing the environment in which this person will grow and develop into who they are meant to be.
Often the person they are meant to be challenges the very core of who you are meant to be, and so the process is a journey you both travel, with the wise parent learning, as well as teaching.
“Lots of people are born into lives that feel like a journey in the very middle of a big ship on familiar seas; they sit comfortably, crossing their legs, they know when the sun will rise and when the moon will wane, they have plans that they follow, they have a map! But then there are those of us, a few, who are born into lives that feel like standing at the very top of the ship’s stern; we have to stand up, hold on tight for dear life, we never know when the waves will rock and we never know where the sun will set or when the moon will wane! Nothing follows the laws of common nature and we live in a wild, wild awakening and the only map we have is the map of the stars! We’re called to see the lighting tear at the horizon, we’re chosen to roar with the tempests, but we’re also the first ones to see the suns rise, the first ones to watch the moons form anew! There is nothing ordinary, nothing at all. But neither are we! And we wouldn’t want it any other way!” C Joybell C