Of varying form and purpose, we all arrive in a beautiful and powerful way – the key is to remain here not with force but with formidable grace.
Every day, I tenderly pluck and sort the unwanted guests between the treasured plants in the garden of this life of mine. I carefully reach between the stalks and flowers I choose to keep and arrange them all just so.
And, even with the most careful attention, I never leave my garden without scrapes, brush marks and bruises.
Yes, some of the most treasured plants in my garden have thorns. I move with particular sensitivity around them lest they snag my flesh. And somehow even as they cut me, I am still able to see their beauty and feel their special worth. They reach out and brush against me as if they just want to touch, to say “isn’t this all so grand that we are here?!”
It is at that moment when I am wounded but still capable of loving – even those plants with thorns – that I recognize that this coexistence is the essence of thriving.
Whatever you do, do it with the essence of ease.
It doesn’t mean stop what you are doing. It means stay connected to your source, as if you are carrying your home with you, so you are not impatiently trying to get somewhere.
Slow down from the inside, even if the outside is wanting or needing to move swiftly. You can move swiftly, full of purpose and zeal, but on the inside remain steady, slow moving.
When I slow down on the inside, I find I don’t need to push so hard on the outside because I know I’m already where I should be.
Suppressed sorrow, inner anger, fear, hatred, and injustice boil inside of me.
My breath, my breath – it struggles to move. I feel all so intensely but for the capacity to breathe – to imbibe the life force of my being.
I judge with ignorance. I judge from a place of intolerance. I judge inaction and I judge action.
I accuse. I blame. I judge. I shame…it goes on and on.
I carry my own sufferings as well as yours, knowing the answer is to relieve from within, to activate a force of love so great that others and myself cannot help but be moved to peace.
I begin to see the mistakes and inadequacies and to release myself and subsequently you from the shackles of limited beliefs and misperceptions.
I begin to feel the shift. I begin to feel myself escaping…not as a victim but as a beacon in a rising space of forgiveness, freedom and love. The hate softens and I then hold so much more compassion, kindness and understanding for all the sufferings than ever before.
And, as this life would have it, the weight bears down once more on my throat, taking away my voice, closing off my airway, and so I begin again turning inward.
These times when the breath cannot be freed, I must turn to love and relieve the anger from within.
Creativity is a river always running through us…a river that sources imagination.
Imagination gives rise to widening pools of contemplation and greater depths of cohesion.
From this place springs the voice of the intuition…flowing strong and confidently into my external reality.
The more often I sit by this river and allow the currents to flow, the more resonant my knowing and the more joyful and fulfilling my experiences become.
Motion around me could easily create a distraction or even be perceived as a danger. Motion around me could be a sign that things are passing me by.
Or, motion could be a wonderful reminder to feel my own stillness, to watch without attachment, and not be in such a hurry to get somewhere.
Waiting for my thoughts to quiet.
With each breath, feigning an attempt to soften the tension in my muscles.
Always on high alert, my body is the ever faithful soldier standing at attention, ready to advance, attack, or defend.
My thoughts and feeling providing constant counsel, conducting their business at all hours of the day and night as if essential personnel.
It is a strange request I make that all the components that serve me in my daily busy-ness are called upon now to rest.
They are troubled by this pause as it could imply they may no longer be needed. They resist – the body…the mind…the emotions that want to protect and define me.
And yet, a strange and delightful spaciousness coats my experience when I am willing to just sit down and breathe.
It frees them all to not disappear but to serve me better. They become my friends, sipping tea on the deck, holding hands and dancing in the absence of mission and doing.
Oh, the joy of knowing my thoughts, my feelings, my body in the absence of need.
We rest here for a bit together, finding a freshness in how we coexist…
…and then we agree to do this much more often.
I feel your heart beating next to mine even though miles away.
I know your moments of pain and sorrow even without hearing you cry.
On the gentle breeze that blows, I encounter great waves of relief, joy, and peace as they ebb and flow in you.
Even out of site I know you are there.
We may be physically distanced, but energetically, emotionally, socially, we are closer than ever before.
Today we may just be closer than ever before.
Perhaps just like with so much else in our lives, these days are calling for us to release ourselves from engrained beliefs, resist holding onto outdated information, and let go of old ways of doing things. These days are providing an ideal space for new and beautiful growth, the kind that emerges from sloughing off the decay.
It is not my intent to be uncooperative or argumentative. I never rise in the morning with a plan to see others as difficult or ungrateful. But, soon antigens like stress, fatigue, and illness feed into the chaos of my day and next thing you know otherwise favorable relationships begin to sour.
It is easy to defend my actions, to blame others, and to deny the fear that gives rise to my crustiness. But, for what? Why is it that just when I need kindness most I fuel the unrest?
If we seek empathy, acceptance, and compassion from others, we must first practice it ourselves. Reflecting on how we come across and how we see others may help us to be more patient with the “cantankerous” people who cross our paths each day…and that just might make it a little less likely that we will be the cantankerous ones.