Tag: compassion

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Dancing with our Shadow

I have spoken with so many beautiful, spiritually oriented people who deeply believe there is something profoundly broken within them. These are people who are open-heartedly surging toward the light with all they have, using whatever path feels right to them. They are genuinely kind and sensitive, giving and warm. Yet, these gentle, loving souls carry wounds within their hearts that are tender to … Read More Dancing with our Shadow

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Walking Each Other Home

There are countless qualities that we seek to master during the course of our lives – patience, endurance, joy, truth, wisdom, dignity – you know each of them intimately. These lessons step forward humbly, disguising themselves as poverty, heartbreak, skin color, illness, political affiliation, disability, and as every other possible aspect of a person’s circumstances. The disguises, the costumes, are the very things we … Read More Walking Each Other Home

Mindfulness: The Graduate Program

The phone rang this morning somewhere between measuring out pills for the dog and dressing Captain’s wound.  “RED ALERT!” woooop!  woooop!  wooop!  (The ringtone for my parents is the Star-Trek battle alarm)  I turned off the ringer, having learned decades ago that buying myself a few moments to prepare for whatever is about to fall in my lap is well worth the delay. Message: “They’re coming for … Read More Mindfulness: The Graduate Program

Not Knowing, and other disasters

She’s 180 lbs of soft, furry, brindle mastiff love – and she’s very ill. She may die, and she may pull though. I don’t know. About the only thing that I do know, is that I don’t know. That’s a hard place to be, but it offers some stunning and sometimes very painful opportunities to practice living in this moment. Not quite a week … Read More Not Knowing, and other disasters

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On Meditation

As I stepped into the barn on this cool morning, all three horses were still and silent.  I was among them, welcomed.  They neither turned to greet me nor turned away.  They simply accepted my presence as part of their own. For most of us, the barriers that we erect to keep our ‘self’ safe preclude this kind of openness. We brace for impact … Read More On Meditation

It’s the Little Things

At some point in my life, I became a champion of little things.  I don’t remember when this happened, which isn’t unusual because I have such a quirky memory.  What I do know is that I’ve always been fascinated by the tiny. Miniscule beads, insects, seeds, just about anything mini is interesting in some way to me.  This has been quite a challenge, I … Read More It’s the Little Things

The Most Important Thing

This afternoon, I had the opportunity to speak to a very wonderful group of women.  I had no inkling that it was I who would be spoken to. It was a work thing.  I was to go and give a lunch-time talk about our organization to a group of elderly ladies at the Jewish Community Center in the city where I work.  I had stressed … Read More The Most Important Thing

Acceptance

How deeply poignant, our struggle to “accept”.  How painfully overwhelming to wrestle with surges of agonizing grief, the black ocean of shame, the fear of what may come, or the steadfast desire to make things right. We know beyond any doubt, and from our own experience, that some kind of acceptance would resolve, at least to a degree, the ferocity of the conflict within us.  And yet, the … Read More Acceptance

The Courage to Risk

Anaïs Nin: “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom” Winter is still clinging tightly to the pasture.  The icy wind threatens, and despite the sun there are still patches of snow.  Yet, almost imperceptibly, spring is being born.  There is mud where the snow has been.  The grass is … Read More The Courage to Risk

Broken Crow

silver snow-lit night black crow scribes his epitaph dragging broken wings For three days, he held his position under the bird feeder, scrappy enough to scare off the squirrels.  Hopping around the yard and cawing like a fish monger, you’d think he was still king.  Last night, I watched him leave his post.  He made the arduous trek to the front field and disappeared.  I’ll remember … Read More Broken Crow

Intimate Solitude

The rains came yesterday, cold and constant, saturating the already-soaked ground and turning the paddock into a swamp. There are hoof prints a foot deep in spots, where restless horses churned up the earth as they endured the relentless frigid pounding. This morning, they huddle in a soggy clump, already recovering and patiently waiting for the sun. Fog drapes itself around them like silk. … Read More Intimate Solitude

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Are You Listening?

At the paddock gate, stop to become horse. The whirlwind of everyday thoughts has no useful place here Leave grind-mind at the gate, as you would your shoes outside the door of the temple Listen! Listen with your fingertips, to the cold of the latch Hear with your eyes, the beads of night-dew frozen now in splendid prisms. Listen!  Become a great wide door to the … Read More Are You Listening?

Turning Compassion Inward

All of us struggle with our pain to some degree.  Our pain contracts us, folding us over to protect the heart. It feels right, it feels like the natural path, to become defensive, small and hard. Shutting ourselves off from what we believe to be the source of discomfort, we build walls, erect barriers and summon the guards of anger and indignation. We struggle in this … Read More Turning Compassion Inward