Sunday, June 02, 2019

A love that embraces what is and the diversity in the unity of life.

"Religion and faith based on consenting to the world as it is unites humankind, whereas the faith of a particular confession or group builds walls between people. The religious experience that encompasses and loves the world as it is recognizes no borders."

"Those who accept and love the earth as it is can't remain with the confines of a single group. They go beyond the limits of their particular group and embrace the wholeness of the world as it is. This love of the earth and the movement such lovers make - reaching beyond their group toward the larger wholeness of the world - have a quality that is very different from the belief that fears and hates and divides. This love embraces, holds and cherishes the diversity in the unity of life."
- Bert Hellinger

Friday, May 24, 2019

Patience is everything when it comes to the creative progress

Rilke wrote in his book Letters to a Young Poet

"... all progress must come from deep within and cannot be pressed or hurried by anything.  Everything is gestation and then bringing forth. To let each impression and each germ of a feeling come to completion, wholly in itself, in the dark, in the inexpressible, the unconscious, beyond the reach of one's own intelligence, and await with deep humility and patience that birth-hour of a new clarity: that alone is living the artist's life: in understanding as in creating.

"There is here no measuring with time, no year matters, and ten years are nothing. Being an artist means, not reckoning and counting, but ripening like the tree does not force its sap and stands confident in the storms of spring without the fear that after them may come no summer. It does come. But it comes only to the patient, who are there as though eternity lay before them, so unconcernedly still and wide. I learn it daily, learn it with pain to which I am grateful: patience is everything."

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Deepening our Intimacy with LOSS

A beautiful essay by Robert Augustus Masters:

DEEPENING OUR VIEW OF LOSS

"Loss. The very word tends to be over-associated with misfortune. It commonly gets reduced to the gloomy cousin of achievement, growth, accumulation. It is not supposed to smile in any way in public, unless what’s been lost is something clearly undesirable, like acne or a toxic relationship.
But think of all the nasty connotations of “loser” as compared to “grower” or “winner” or “achiever.” We are all losers. Everyone, regardless of their perks or elevated status on the anthill. Incarnation ensures this. Loss comes with having a life. What if we were to become more respectful of — and less contracted around — loss, of letting go of what is already leaving or out of our grasp? Must we be envisioned as losing our battle against cancer? Or losing our youth? Or our tennis game?

"What if we were to lose the sense of entitlement implicit in the preceding three sentences? We can plaster our days with fridge-magnet affirmations, wrap ourselves up in feel-good slogans, banish our wrinkles to myopic mirrors, reverse imaginary clocks, but the procession of loss keeps on going, raining on our parades, stomping past our protestations and claims of unfairness.

"Death is the mother of loss; loss nonconceptually connects us with death. If this is not good news to you, look deeper. Breathe in what is breathing you out.

"Grief is the sobering, heartbreakingly alive acknowledgment of loss. The felt presence of loss, whatever the scale, deepens and mysteriously sweetens not just what remains, but also the whole unimaginable immensity and mystery of what is, right down to the tiniest, crunchiest, most unrepentantly fixed detail.

"We play peekaboo with what truly matters, intuiting at least some of its deeper design, all too easily forgetting or marginalizing the reality of loss upon loss that pervades it all. Inhale, and innumerable worlds appear and evolve; exhale, and they disappear, their billions of years erased. Inhale, exhale, time and timelessness both gone. Repeat infinitely. No equations for this, no definitive explanation, cosmic bumper stickers flayed to nothing but angelic confetti, boundless silence saying whatever needs to be said.

"In this, there is infinite loss. It’s personal, interpersonal, and transpersonal all at the same time. Loss connects us all, connects it all. Now. Grief hooks up loss and love and being. Don’t let loss harden you.

"My losses, like yours, are many. The first was the amniotic universe that held me prior to my birth — and yet I still feel it when I lie down to sleep, softly spread-eagled under the bedcovers, riding the waves and wavelets of each breath.

"Is anything ever truly lost? Scientists speak of the echo of the Big Bang. Everything still echoes, still leaves some kind of footprint somewhere.

"Is this not, in essence, the permanence of impermanence? The presence of forever, spread through every detail, every moment? Every shade of suffering? Loss, fully felt, opens us to this.

"This is Grace in the primordial yet ever-present raw. Loss connects us all, connects it all. Bowing to this, we open more fully to the Mystery, now."

Thursday, May 09, 2019

How small what we wrestle with...

How small, what we wrestle with
how immense what wrestles with us,
if we could allow it to be conquered by the great storm -
like the other things,
then we would become vast and nameless.
 What we defeat are the small things,
 and the success itself makes us small.
 While the extraordinary and eternal
does not want to be bent or shaped by us.
 - Rilke

Saturday, April 13, 2019

The Invitation

The Invitation
Oriah Mountain Dreamer


It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life's betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it, or fade it, or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own; if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, 'Yes.'

It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Towards the Gateway to Spring

(From Benedictus A Book of Blessings, John O’Donohue)
When the gentleness between you hardens
And you fall out of your belonging with each other,
May the depths you have reached hold you still.

When no true word can be said, or heard,
And you mirror each other in the script of hurt,
When even the silence has become raw and torn,
May you hear again an echo of your first music.

When the weave of affection starts to unravel
And anger begins to sear the ground between you,
Before this weather of grief invites
The black seed of bitterness to find root,
May your souls come to kiss.

Now is the time for one of you to be gracious,
To allow a kindness beyond thought and hurt,
Reach out with sure hands
To take the chalice of your love,
And carry it carefully through this echoless waste
Until this winter pilgrimage leads you
Towards the gateway to spring.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Free Bird, Dude.

Caged Bird - By Maya Angelou

A free bird leaps
on the back of the wind   
and floats downstream   
till the current ends
and dips his wing
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped and   
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings   
with a fearful trill   
of things unknown   
but longed for still   
and his tune is heard   
on the distant hill   
for the caged bird   
sings of freedom.

The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn bright lawn
and he names the sky his own

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams   
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream   
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied   
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings   
with a fearful trill   
of things unknown   
but longed for still   
and his tune is heard   
on the distant hill   
for the caged bird   
sings of freedom.

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Mind Travel