Poetry and Other Wisdom
There is no controlling life.
Try corralling a lightning bolt, containing a tornado. Dam a stream and it will create a new channel. Resist, and the tide
will sweep you off your feet. Allow, and grace will carry
you to higher ground. The only safety lies in letting it all in –
the wild and the weak; fear, fantasies, failures and success. When loss rips off the doors of
the heart, or sadness veils your vision with despair, practice becomes simply bearing the truth. In the choice to let go of your known way of being, the whole world is revealed to your new eyes
By: Danna Faulds
“Have you ever had the experience of stopping so completely,
of being in your body so completely,
of being in your life so completely,
that what you knew and what you didn’t know, that what had been and what was yet to come,
and the way things are right now
no longer held even the slightest hint of anxiety or discord?
It would be a moment of complete presence, beyond striving, beyond mere acceptance, beyond the desire to escape or fix anything or plunge ahead,
a moment of pure being, no longer in time,
a moment of pure seeing, pure feeling,
a moment in which life simply is,
and that “is-ness” grabs you by all your senses, all your memories, by your very genes,
by your loves,
and welcomes you home.”
By: Jon Kabat-Zinn
I have heard it all my life,
A voice calling a name I recognized as my own. Sometimes it comes as a soft-bellied whisper. Sometimes it holds an edge of urgency.
But always it says: Wake up my love. You are walking asleep. There's no safety in that!
Remember what you are and let this knowing take you home to the Beloved with every breath.
Hold tenderly who you are and let a deeper knowing colour the shape of your humanness. There is nowhere to go.
What you are looking for is right here.
Open the fist clenched in wanting and see what you already hold in your hand.
There is no waiting for something to happen, no point in the future to get to.
All you have ever longed for is here in this moment, right now.
You are wearing yourself out with all this searching. Come home and rest.
How much longer can you live like this?
Your hungry spirit is gaunt, your heart stumbles. All this trying. Give it up!
Let yourself be one of the God-mad, faithful only to the Beauty you are.
Let the Lover pull you to your feet and hold you close, dancing even when fear urges you to sit this one out.
Remember- there is one word you are here to say with your whole being. When it finds you, give your life to it. Don't be tight-lipped and stingy.
Spend yourself completely on the saying. Be one word in this great love poem we are writing together.
© Oriah Mountain Dreamer
If You Would Grow - Shine the Light Of Loving Self-Care On Yourself
If you would grow to your best self
Be patient, not demanding
Accepting, not condemning
Nurturing, not withholding
Self-marveling, not belittling
Gently guiding, not pushing and punishing
For you are more sensitive than you know Mankind is as tough as war yet delicate as flowers
We can endure agonies but we open fully only to warmth and light And our need to grow is as fragile as a fragrance dispersed by storms of will
To return only when those storm are still
So, accept, respect, and attend your sensitivity A flower cannot be opened with a hammer.
By: Daniel F. Mead
How Surely Gravity’s Law
How surely gravity’s law, strong as an ocean current, takes hold of even the strongest thing and pulls it toward the heart of the world.
Each thing, each stone, blossom, child is held in place.
Only we, in our arrogance, push out beyond what we belong to for some empty freedom.
If we surrendered to earth’s intelligence we could rise up rooted, like trees.
Instead we entangle ourselves in knots of our own making and struggle, lonely and confused.
So, like children, we begin again to learn from the things, because they are in God’s heart; they have never left him.
This is what these things teach us: to fall, patiently trusting our heaviness.
Even a bird has to do that before he can fly.
By: Rainer Maria Rilke
One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting
their bad advice,
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind, the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do -- determined to save
the only life you could save.
By: Mary Oliver
It was many years ago that the villagers of Downstream recall spotting the first body in the river. Some old timers remember how spartan were the facilities and procedures for managing that sort of thing. Sometimes, they say, it would take hours to pull 10 people from the river, and even then only a few would survive.
Though the number of victims in the river increased greatly in recent years, the good folks of Downstream have responded admirably to the challenge. Their rescue system is clearly second to none: most people discovered in the swirling waters are reached within 20 minutes-many less then 10. Only a small number drown each day before help arrives-a big improvement from the way it used to be.
Talk to the people of Downstream and they’ll speak with pride about the new hospital by the edge of the waters, the flotilla of rescue boats ready for service at a moment’s notice, the comprehensive health plans for coordinating all the manpower involved, and the large numbers of highly trained and dedicated swimmers ready to risk their lives to save victims from the raging currents. Sure it costs a lot but, say the Downstreamers, what else can decent people do except to provide whatever is necessary when human lives are at stake.
Oh, a few people in Downstream have raised the question now and again, but most folks show little interest in what’s happening Upstream. It seems there’s so much to do to help those in the river that nobody’s got time to check how all those bodies are getting there in the first place. That’s the way things are, sometimes.
The Practice of Being Present
Attend to the breath.
Let the rhythm slow and settle.
Filling, emptying, draw the outside in, and then release.
Simplicity and ease.
Nothing to do but breathe, relax and feel the free movement of air and life force,
watch the play of energy and sensation,
allow everything to be, without the need to change or fix or
make it different.
This moment, you can listen to your soul. This breath, you can have no goal but being. You are already complete.
This, just this, is what it means to be whole.
By: Danna Faulds
Mohini was a regal white tiger who lived for many years at the Washington, D.C. National Zoo. For most of her years her home was in the old lion house-a typical twelve-by-twelve-foot cage with iron bars and a cement floor. Mohini spent her days pacing restlessly back and forth in her cramped quarters. Eventually, biologists and staff worked together to create a natural habitat for her. Covering several acres, it had hills, trees, a pond and a variety of vegetation. With excitement and anticipation they released Mohini into her new and expansive environment. But it was too late. The tiger immediately sought refuge in a corner of the compound, where she lived for the remainder of her life. Mohini paced and paced in that corner until an area twelve feet by twelve feet was worn bare of grass.
Walk Don’t Run
Walk, don’t run.
That’s it. Walk, don’t run.
Slow down, breathe deeply,
and open your eyes because there’s
a whole world right here within this one. The bush doesn’t suddenly catch on fire, it’s been burning the whole time.
Moses is simply moving slowly enough to see it. And when he does, he takes off his sandals.
Not because the ground has suddenly become holy,but because he’s just now becoming aware that the ground has been holy the whole time.
Efficiency is not God’s highest goal for your life, neither is busyness or how many things you can get done in one day or speed, or even success.
But walking which leads to seeing,
now that’s something.
That’s the invitation for every one of us today, and everyday, in every conversation, interaction, event, and moment: to walk, not run. And in doing so to see a whole world right here within this one.
By: Rob Bell
I GREET THE WORLD
I greet the world
I greet myself
I greet the sky
I greet the earth
Surprisingly I lift the moon from the earth to the sky
Half moon to the right
Half moon to the left
I bend my knees,
I greet everyone to the right,
I greet everyone to the left,
I greet myself,
I greet the world.
Then it was as if I suddenly saw the secret beauty of their hearts,
the depths of their hearts where neither sin nor desire nor self-knowledge can reach, the core of their reality, the person that each one is in the eyes of the Divine.
If only they could all see themselves as they really are.
If only we could see each other that way all the time.
There would be no more war, no more hatred, no more cruelty and no more greed.
I suppose the big problem would be that we would fall down and worship each other - byThomas Merton