Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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The Snag

The Fabric 2

A stirring, an imbalance, an unthinkable happens and there I am…swirling in thoughts and emotions.

Although we seem unconnected, we are tethered undeniably to others’ experiences, their pain, their suffering, their anger.  Their division and righteousness becomes mine, even when I don’t want it to be.

And then comes the arduous task of sifting.  Sifting through the messages in all of this…not what it means to my community or the statement it makes about my society, but the fundamental lesson for me in the perceived tragedies and suffering that stand before me.

I dare not admit how my thoughts flow in circular motions…how I cannot point at the right or wrong…it all just seems to come back to me, to the fear I have that any one of them could be me.

…the “victim”…the “suffering”…the “perpetrator”…the “responsible one.”

These labels belong to my deepest shadows and like threads dancing on a loom, have long since been woven into the fabric of me.

So, I turn my anger to the scariest one in an attempt to cut that thread.  And then the story unfolds, my experience is defined by calling out the grossest attributes of others although deep down inside I know they are still undeniably tethered to me, undeniably me.

It is then that I must fill with compassion, for each of them and for me. I must allow these situations and the contrast they provide to take me back to the center of my being, to turn inward and calm the swirling from the inside.  Instead of needing the contrast to tug at the fabric from the outside as if separate from me, I turn inward to reweave the threads, to smooth the snag so that the fabric on the outside lays out more seamlessly.

Each time the contrast begins to pull and tug at me again, I slow the loom, treasure that thread, and remember that no matter what any of us have done or who any of us seem to be,  the threads are the same – it is a complex fabric that tethers you and me.


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A Call to Activism

Live Oak - Activism

In the darkness, fear and anger deepen their grip on me.  Bumping up against ideals, opinions, and stories that I have formed, with urgency I am compelled to avenge imbalances and inequities.  I dash in to sweep up the broken pieces of what I perceive as attacks against me and struggle surrounding me.  I am driven to defend principles that through my ego’s eye define me.

This posture that I take implies superiority and gives way to judgment.  In my rush to right the wrongs, I become the being I so justly argue against.  Resentment bubbles up and my ego says, “they are not worthy…they should be punished…they do not belong…silence them…shun them.”

And then my heart whispers, “wait…they too are suffering.”  Those opinions I defend and just as importantly those I oppose are here to guide, test, and inform me.

To release my struggle, my fear, my anger, and my suffering, others do not need to pay a conjured debt for who they are.

Compassion, patience, and trust become my weapons against the injustices, inequities, and imbalances that swirl around me.

Allowing it all to exist and maintaining harmony, care, and peace…that is the true work of an activist.


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Awakening

Awakening

What if your daily experiences were really no different than your dreams – simply stories pieced together to provide information.  Stories intended to awaken in you parts that are dormant, numb, forgotten or that would otherwise go unnoticed.  Each of these stories placed before you to illuminate a potential to think, feel, and engage differently beyond what is familiar and routine.

When I move my body in a new way, I awaken unfamiliar yet exciting new connections with muscles and bones. When I move my thoughts with curiosity, not always believing I have the answer, I am no longer reticent but have rubbed the sleep from my eyes.  When my emotions flow freely, even to the point of creating discomfort, I welcome the new dawn of compassion, courage, trust, and forgiveness.

I awaken an inner knowing, like the sun illuminating the sky.  I am suddenly aware of something far greater than these dreams.  I rise from the darkness knowing my capacity to explore, play, experiment, feel and know, all the while aware that the stories do not make me.


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Star Light

star light

Follow not the bright star

that leads from above,

but the light from within

that guides with pure love.


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A little bite will do

cake

A cake baked rich and full calls us to dive in.  Taste buds perk up, enzymes dance with anticipation, the whole body awakens to receive the treat.  In one bite everything else around fades away…thoughts, senses, feelings all tie into this moment.  There is a full sense of aliveness, of nourishment, of awareness and special connection in knowing that this bite can never be duplicated and would never need to be.  This bite fills the space of needing anything else.  At one in this moment with this sustenance, we know it is enough.  That is all we need to feel complete, full, satisfied.

Each moment in life is like that bite of cake, so rich, so filling, and completely satisfying when we are aware, when we allow ourselves to be fully consumed and to fully consume the deliciousness.


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Finding Your Balance

IMG_1786

There is a sweet moment in sailing when the two sails, the main and the jib, are trimmed so precisely — balanced, as a captain would call it — that the boat seems to sail itself, rising on the wind, gliding through the water, you can even let go of the wheel and the boat will stay its course., tuning itself to the angles of the wind,  knowing what it needs best.

Our make up is not much different than that of a sailboat.  For, when we connect body and mind in seamless balance, the vessel of intuition takes flight and the higher Self is free to let go of the wheel, to trust each piece to do its part in divine equilibrium to sail us forward most efficiently, most powerfully, most joyfully and full of ease.

Some call it a true art to be a captain who sails a balanced ship.  Take the time to trim your sails, to feel the wind, to know what it is you need, and to find your balance.


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Take a Stand

Stand Under

The feet are the foundation for the heart and head, the physical roots of Self.  They carry us. They know our struggles.  They tell our story – a story of how we have lived, our relationships with others, our deepest strengths, and where we have stood through every weakness.

Whether standing in the shadows or on the front lines of our experiences, we directly connect those experiences to our roots.

When we humbly and courageously stand under our experiences as opposed to standing up to them, we begin to open our hearts, strengthen our compassion for ourselves and others, and to exercise the most clear and powerful voice of action, that of the higher self.

We must stand under in order to understand.