Awareness, Pain, Movement, Grace

Death Awareness In earlier posts, I’ve written about Maraṇasati—recognizing that as we’re living, we’re dying. I always hold the fragility of life somewhere in my frame of consciousness, but, right now, it takes center stage even more often. Rampant Pain racism hopelessness stress judgment being unseen fear shame hate with big capital letters psychological abuse marginalization brutality […]

In Pursuit of Being Real

In Margery Williams’ The Velveteen Rabbit, a stuffed toy is given to a boy as a Christmas gift, but soon forgotten, set aside in favor of other “more expensive” toys. The older and wiser, Skin Horse, befriends the rabbit, teaching him about love and becoming real. “Real…. is a thing that happens to you. When a […]

The Fabric of You

A while ago, I made pillow covers from delicate fabric with silk fibers of amazing colors. These different threads, woven together, make gorgeous patterns of free form flowers and leaves. The non-selvage edge of this fabric unravels easily and really looking at each strand, I was surprised by how much movement and beauty they had, […]

Bridges & Life, Knowing What to take on the Journey

Bridges Series:Part 1: Bridges & Life 6/17/20Part 2: Bridges & Life, Crossing Troubled Water 6/19/20Part 3: Bridges & LIfe, Crossing Bridges Instead of Building Walls 6/23/20Part 4: Bridges & LIfe, Knowing what to take on the Journey 6/23/20 A friend was getting her large home ready to sell after her husband’s sudden death. As we purged, sorted, and […]

Bridges & Life, Crossing Bridges Instead of Building Walls

We build a little wall first—just tall enough so that when we venture out (into the sometimes scary world), we can turn around, run fast, jump over it, get really “small” and hide behind it. It’s the “level 1 protection wall” built from something like sand or leaves (sad, lonely). If we have to jump over that wall often enough, we end up creating a sturdier divider. This “level 2 protection wall” is made of materials like brick or wood (bullied, wounded). It still allows us to venture out into the world, but now we have to climb over it to safety. When we’ve had to retreat behind wall number 2 long enough, we finally build the “level 3 protection wall”. This one is serious stuff, an impenetrable structure that no one is getting through! It’s made of steel or concrete (scarred, crushed) and reinforced with pain and abandonment.

Bridges & Life, Crossing Troubled Water

Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water”➀ was one of the most performed songs of the twentieth century. I’ve always loved the simplicity and significance of these words: “When you’re weary, feeling small,when tears are in your eyes,I will dry them all.I’m on your sideoh, when times get rough,and friends just can’t be found,like a bridge […]

Bridges & Life

There are times in life when you’re “on the same page” as another person, seeming to grow together in tandem. Maybe, your relationship blossomed from acquaintance to dear friend, or from friendship to significant partner. Perhaps, you met someone and instantly knew you were kindred spirits. (How wonderful is that type of synchronicity?) For many, however, the path […]

The Positive and “Aha” Moments

These past few months have been, unarguably, incredibly challenging times. Last week, I wrote about racism and its painful impact on our world. This is a critical conversation that needs to be ongoing. During the past few weeks, I also asked friends and readers:Has there been anything “positive” that you’ve experienced as a result of […]

Hatred, Violence, Pain, How Do We Move Forward? (Part 2)

Today, I intended to share the answers I collected from questions regarding the impact of COVID-19. However, responses are still pouring in from: “With all the hatred, violence, anger, pain, and sadness going on right now, how do you think we move forward; how do we make a difference?” This is a big picture life question—a […]

Walking Through the Dark (and COVID-19)

Many years ago, I experienced moving in and out of the dark. Someone I love was in crisis, and there were times I feared a tragic outcome. It was terrifying and tested my strengths and beliefs. I was walking in the dark. But, in that dark, there was still light. I was continually shown the […]

What Languages Do You Speak?

I love this story from my grandson’s first year of grade school: Ethan had an excellent teacher, and at the beginning of the school year, she asked if any of the children spoke a second language. A few children raised their hands. When she got to Ethan, he said, “I speak Duck➀.” She heard that […]

The Journey

I am a journeyer, traveling through this life, looking and seeking, searching and learning. I pick up things as I journey— a book, a photograph, a postcard and put them in my backpack. Sometimes, I take those things out and look at them, mostly at night, mostly when I’m alone. I smile, I laugh. I […]

Closed Minds

Pre, COVID-19, I parked next to a car with this bumper sticker: “A Closed Mind is a wonderful thing to lose.” When I went back, two women were in the car, so I knocked on the driver’s window and shared how much I love that message, which led to a short conversation about life. Closed-mindedness, unreceptive to […]

Moving From Overwhelmed to Serene and Peaceful, Part II

(continued from “Moving From Overwhelmed to Serene and Peaceful, Part I”) When you’re overwhelmed, and life is exhausting, you need to “step aside” for a while by moving away from environments or relationships that impede you from living into your highest self. There are also things you may have to “set aside” like fear, anger, […]

Moving From Overwhelmed to Serene and Peaceful, Part I

Do you ever feel overwhelmed, exhausted, or like you’re carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders? Does it sometimes seem that despite how hard you work, how often you “put yourself out there,” or how much you love, it just isn’t enough? Are you ever on the brink of hopelessness, imagining that if you […]

Life Right Now—Sadness and COVID-19

COVID-19 has infected us not only physically. During the past two days, we talked about spirituality, fear, and superheroes. Today, let’s tackle sadness. There are, obviously, a lot of things to be sad about right now. We can’t help experiencing unhappiness in challenging times. But, we can work to move through it. Sit quietly with […]

Life Right Now—Fear, Superheroes, and COVID-19

FEAR Discussions about COVID-19 have become part of our daily conversations. I’m not suggesting that we hide from the updates, but we need an awareness of how being bombarded by this news, on every media platform, is affecting us. Fear has become one of our songs, and there’s a good reason for that. Some of […]

Life Right Now—Spirituality and COVID-19

In the midst of COVID-19, it seems like many of us are in one of two camps. Camp 1 is overflowing with people who are overwhelmed, frustrated or exhausted. Camp 2 holds those who are at the other end of the spectrum and feel defeated, sad, bored, or lonely. How are you holding up? Which camp is […]

Finding Light in the Dark

The world looks very different right now. Much that we’ve taken for granted has disappeared, pushing us to rethink our lives and priorities. Many of us have had to recreate day-to-day life. For some, that brings physical solitude that’s punctuated by virtual visits and phone conversations. For others, it means complete isolation or, on the […]

Stream of Consciousness

I go to sleep, thinking. I wake up thinking—a stream of consciousness that rarely stops (yep, am working on that). It’s different every day (of course), but this is what it sounds like on a rainy, Thursday morning with a world infected by COVID-19: Last night I talked to my granddaughter, Lauren. I shared with […]

Finding Tanquility Now

We usually have some sense of which way our lives are headed, but one of the many lessons, during this time of upheaval is that: when we learn to embrace uncertainty by being present in the moments we have right now, we will have mastered honoring each day as the gift it is. In light of what […]

Empty or Full

“Different Views” their upbringings and lives to this point were very similar; they both knew good and bad, happiness and sorrow but, they chose to walk through life very differently. his house and life were full; overfull really, but he was like an empty vessel; his heart devoid of love, not believing in the possibility of meaningful human […]

Paying Attention

I’m aware, so often, of the fragility of each moment (this one is slipping away as I finish this sentence). Most of us assume so much: that we’ll still be breathing at the end of this day, that our loved ones will continue to be part of our lives, that we’ll have food to eat […]

Whole

The waves crash onto the shore as I walk on the deserted beach not long after the sun has decided to grace us, once again, with her morning majesty. Litter—empty plastic cups, a beat-up cooler, two broken chairs, a few beer bottles—carelessly left behind by fellow humans, stands out hideously in the otherwise perfection of […]

The Shut Up and Deal Dance

Almost every day, I talk with someone about life. Yeah, I know, that’s a really enormous topic but those conversations aren’t usually about tackling “the big picture”; just little clips of it. I realize that what I write about is often insignificant in the grand scheme of our planet (and I never want to lose sight of the […]