Let Go and Move On

Let go of old belief systems. You know, the things ingrained in your brain that hold you back or pin you down. You know what I’m talking about. It might be a family superstition, a religious dogma, an expectation or opinion of you, or a statement made against you. This could be a past humiliation, something that binds you in shame or guilt or causes you a lack of confidence. Many of these boulders of principle date back to our childhoods. Yes, I call them boulders because they weigh so much on our emotional bodies that we are unable to move our physical and intellectual bodies to start the work we need to do. When you can move this block in your mind you enter the wonderful world of emotional and spiritual freedom.

Honor what is true. How do you know what is right? First of all, the ego lies. When we choose to do the right thing it usually resonates in either our heart or gut, sometimes both. The guidance of prayer or meditation helps pave the way, not what someone else tells you is best for you. The answers will come, but you must be willing to listen to spirit.

Clip those wings and fly!

In Celebration of Rivers

The river delights to lift us free, if only we dare to let go. Our true work is this voyage, this adventure. — (Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah)

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There are many ways to salvation, and one of them is to follow a river. — (David Brower, Foreword to Oregon Rivers by Larry Olson and John Daniel)

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Keep your rivers flowing as they will, and you will continue to know the most important of all freedoms—the boundless scope of the human mind to contemplate wonders, and to begin to understand their meaning. — (David Brower, The Foreword to Oregon Rivers by Larry Olson and John Daniel)

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Wild rivers are earth’s renegades, defying gravity, dancing to their own tunes, resisting the authority of humans, always chipping away, and eventually always winning. — (Richard Bangs & Christian Kallen, River Gods)

Let the mountains talk, let the river run. Once more, and forever. — (David Brower, Let the Mountains Talk; Let the Rivers Run)

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Sit by a river. Find peace and meaning in the rhythm of the lifeblood of the Earth. — (Anonymous)

The song of the river ends not at her banks but in the hearts of those who have loved her. — (Buffalo Joe)

****I spent Independence Day riverside, peaceful and free….a little photography (these shots are long exposures with no editing) and a lot of love make for a perfect day…even with a few rain showers. I hope you had a wonderful weekend.

Meditation Made Simple

To those who complain of the complexity of modern life, he [Henry David Thoreau] might reply,

To those who complain of the complexity of modern life, he [Henry David Thoreau] might reply, “If you want inner peace find it in solitude, not speed, and if you would find yourself, look to the land from which you came and to which you go.” ~Stewart Udall, The Quiet Crisis, 1963

Often it is the simple things in life that pull at my heartstrings. The things I took for granted (and even sometimes scoffed at) as a child now give me immense comfort. To me there is nothing as warming as the feeling of home: Starry skies, the ceaseless call of the whippoorwill, splintered barns with rusty hinges, dirt roads that go on and on, the shocking cold of a mountain stream, the scent of impending rain while in a forest of pine, colorful fields of wildflowers, mulberries eaten straight from the tree…I become immersed in the senses of now.

On Death and Rebirth

“When love awakens in your life, in the night of your heart, it is like the dawn breaking within you. Where before there was anonymity, now there is intimacy; where before there was fear, now there is courage; where before in your life there was awkwardness, now there is a rhythm of grace and gracefulness; where before you used to be jagged, now you are elegant and in rhythm with your self. When love awakens in your life, it is like a rebirth, a new beginning.” ― John O'Donohue, Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom

“When love awakens in your life, in the night of your heart, it is like the dawn breaking within you. Where before there was anonymity, now there is intimacy; where before there was fear, now there is courage; where before in your life there was awkwardness, now there is a rhythm of grace and gracefulness; where before you used to be jagged, now you are elegant and in rhythm with your self. When love awakens in your life, it is like a rebirth, a new beginning.” ― John O’Donohue, Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom

We die and rebirth aspects of ourselves time again as we discover our true selves. We let go of conditioned beliefs as we begin to think for ourselves. People leave our lives and new ones enter throughout the seasons of a lifetime. Our experiences bring wisdom to our souls. There is a peace about us when we learn to accept what we once didn’t.  When we love ourselves, we see the beauty of life and find joy in the simple state of being. At stages of our lives we take things for granted, and later have a great appreciation for them. I experienced one of these moments this past weekend.

I was sitting on my mother’s porch (out in the country) early in the morning drinking a cup of coffee. While it seemed the world was sleeping, people that is, life around me was in full swing. Cardinals and blue jays were singing and the squirrels were rustling about the oaks, cedars, and maples. I could hear the train keening over the mountain. Once the echo disappeared in the distance I heard something I’d never heard from my position. The gurgle from the small creek below the property played like a lullaby upon my soul. I spent much of my youth perched upon the bank or rocks in the creek writing poetry while listening to that very sound. It was such a joy to hear this at the house. I wonder if I could hear the flow of the creek because the water was up from recent downfalls or because I was quiet enough within to listen. My point about death and rebirth within ourselves is many years ago my mind was filled with chatter. This morning meditation filled my heart with love and set my day with graceful intention, a balance I welcome.

Tell me your story of a newfound appreciation.

The Stillness Factor

In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in an clearer light, and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal clearness.  Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth.  ~Mahatma Gandhi

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Have you ever noticed wisdom enters by the way of silence?

A Knowing of the soul occurs.

Mysteries are explained, problems solved, and creative urges born.

Answers wait in silence. As I learn to listen and decipher, I hear more than I ever did with my ears.

Have you ever experienced an epiphany?

These sudden realizations come to me after times of deep contemplation or sleep. These understandings even make appearances in my dreams.

Insights aren’t always clear cut. They can arrive in bits and pieces, like puzzles I must ponder to see how I fit into the equation.

If I enter a quiet time so focused on finding an answer my mind fills with chatter. When I empty my mind, I rise refreshed and observant. A simple switch in perspective is often what I need.

Refraining from speaking has been a lifelong challenge for me. I’m finding more and more how good silence is for my soul.

The first step in the acquisition of wisdom is silence, the second listening, the third memory, the fourth practice, the fifth teaching others. ~Solomon Ibn Gabriol

Peace Like A River

If you' re not beside a real river, close your eyes, and sit down beside an imaginary one, a river where you feel comfortable and safe. Know that the water has wisdom, in its motion through the world, as much wisdom as any of us have. Picture yourself as the water. We are liquid; we innately share water's wisdom. — (Eric Alan, "Meditation Draws Its Power From the Water," The Oregonian (September 11, 2005))

If you’ re not beside a real river, close your eyes, and sit down beside an imaginary one, a river where you feel comfortable and safe. Know that the water has wisdom, in its motion through the world, as much wisdom as any of us have. Picture yourself as the water. We are liquid; we innately share water’s wisdom. — (Eric Alan, “Meditation Draws Its Power From the Water,” The Oregonian (September 11, 2005))

I carry an inner peace. I am able to feel calm in the midst of storms. Recently I began to feel a growing agitation within. At first, I thought I’d allowed outside forces to disrupt my harmony.  I realize we are each subject to a certain amount of negativity and chaos, and I was quick to blame my lack of serenity on that. Once I began to soothe my soul, I discovered it was my own lack of spiritual practice which had caused my unrest.

How simple it is to slip away from the things we need the most, and by things I don’t mean material means. I’m talking about meditation, prayer, solitude, rest, and whatever it might be that feeds or comforts one’s soul.

I suppose it could be said a spiritual life is as important to overall balance as an aligned spine is to physical health.  Have you ever felt out of whack and realized you held the solution in the palm of your hand? Unclench your fist, and read the writings of your heart.

Here’s wishing you enough…

Enough time alone, and enough time with loved ones

Enough quietness to hear the voice within

Enough insight to see the beauty before you

Enough touch to feel the love surrounding you

Enough awareness to feel the wind in your face

Enough fortitude to stop long enough to enjoy the fragrance of the day

And

Enough sensitivity to taste the zest of life…

Refusing To Slip Into Disaray

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While I’ve learned stepping outside the box is stimulating and educational for me, it is daily routine which offers me security and keeps me physically, emotionally, and spiritually fit.

More than a matter of comfort, my daily routine is necessary for my wellbeing. Without tending to the daily practices of life, my house would quickly slip into disrepair. While this is true with home maintenance, I am speaking of my body in all aspects.

I depend on my alone time to start and end my day. I enjoy a time of quiet reflection and gratitude. My prayer life centers and energizes me. Communing with nature allows me to see things in a different perspective and encourages me to be aware of the now in all its simplicity and complexity.

I have writing practices I don’t always employ but which I come back to. It’s the same with exercise and house cleaning. What I’m saying is I don’t have a check list with days of chores, but I generally get to those things…eventually!

Lately, I’ve felt my body slipping into disrepair. Nothing major, just extreme fatigue. I decided since I turned a half a century, it was time for some regular medical checkups. I’ve aced all of my tests! My family doctor ran through my symptoms with me.

Doctor: You’re asking ME if these symptoms are muscular or neurological? Ummm, I’m just a family doctor. I wouldn’t know. You need to see a neurologist or rheumatologist, but I can give you a prescription. Are you opposed to medication?

Me: Yes, I am opposed to taking a prescription if I can get the same results holistically.

You see, I’ve taken the RX he was suggesting years ago, and it made me foggy, like I need more of that! He was surprised I minded feeling groggy and foggy. I couldn’t help but chuckle to myself as he was so quick to send me to someone else. My former, now retired, family doctor used to get angry when I went to my rheumatologist or neurologist. He claimed he could do the very same thing, but at a much lower cost. I guess these two doctors are the difference between old school and new school. Since then I’ve attempted to take my health in my own hands. I’ve felt much better med-free…until recently. Most likely my fatigue is due to menopause jumping in with the fibromyalgia.  I’m finding relief with essential oils.

Anyway, my point other than rambling is I know I must continue my routines… or my physical, emotional, and spiritual health will suffer.

For now, I’m moving slowly and trying to figure out where I’m lacking so I can play catch up.

Do you believe in holistic healthcare? Do you use essential oils or nutritional supplements? Do you follow an exercise routine? Do you follow a daily/weekly spiritual practice? I’m curious how you keep yourselves balanced and fit.

Water Meditation

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DirtMan and I canoed this past weekend. We rowed eight miles starting in our own neighborhood. We traversed the city by connecting channels of water.

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With eight miles of rowing and taking in nature all around us, it was a bit of a Zen session.  Many life lessons can be compared to elements of nature.

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From this viewpoint my daily surroundings appeared smaller while the creeks seemed larger and at times swifter.  Ever feel like your life in general is quite small in comparison to the size of a current predicament?

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From the bank one doesn’t experience the varying shallowness and deepness of the water. A few times we found ourselves (purposely as we were observing egrets) at the bank’s edge. We pushed our oars against the bank to flow back into the current of the deeper water. We often find leverage in friends or family during life’s difficulties.

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There were times we delved into darkness (beneath bridges) in order to emerge to the other side. For a short period of time, the roar of cars overhead pounded our heads while our visibility was dimmed. We came through to the other side with all intact. We might feel similar when faced with life challenges. We learn to be resourceful, prioritize, and most importantly we learn to persevere.

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When Words Lead Us Home

“Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one’s weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.” ~Mahatma Gandi

This flower caught my eye…We are fragile souls living in a sometimes heartless world. Though we may be broken or torn, we are each (hearts, bodies, and souls) beautiful in our own right.

This flower caught my eye…We are fragile souls living in a sometimes heartless world. Though we may be broken or torn, we are each (hearts, bodies, and souls) beautiful in our own right.

Yesterday’s post was not meant to say I won’t be posting…it was an explanation of where I’ve been. We all know there is no timing or method to my posting. I prefer to post because I have something to say, not to post just to say something. Of course, I have many draft files, but those are not always what my heart is saying at the time.

Today’s Musing:

The words we write in the margins are often the most important words of all. Those words are the heart of the matter, and the rest is simply art; beautification, adornment used to make sense of the emotion.

Whether we are writing or reading we often jot down what stirs us. These are the passages we go back to time and again. We meditate on them, explore them, elaborate on them, and allow them to lead us where they will.

We live life much the same way. We trust in our beliefs and morals to guide us. No matter where we go we come back to these.

Your soul places words upon your life. Read the writing on your heart and see where it takes you.

Upon A Drift In Time

“Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences, all events are blessings given to us to learn from.” ~Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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Perhaps to some it appears I have withdrawn from society. Perhaps to a degree I temporarily have. I have retreated to the quiet zone, to a place of listening. I have entered sacred territory, the heart of relationship. Living in relationship has nothing to do with being thrust into the midst of the world.

As you know, there is no right or wrong way to do this. Some meditate. Some pray. Others create art, listen to music, read, dance, or walk in nature. We absorb ourselves where we are led. We do what feeds us. I’m doing a bit of it all as I am called. We all need times of quiet solitude.

I am not absent…I am reentering the flow…