Freedom….

Scorching temperatures belie summer’s waning in my spot in the Universe. Lazy days recall fond memories of time seeming to stand still yet fly by with a wink and most of all… Continue reading

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Cultivating Peace

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Columbine Trail, Lake Chabot

Most Saturday mornings find me running at the lake near my home. It’s a difficult, 9-mile run with terrain that changes from flat to 30% slopes and back again through scenery that will catch your breath. Parts of the trail are so narrow that a distracted mind is a footfall down steep gorges; you have to mind the three R’s: Roots, Rocks, and Ruts.

And it’s perfect for me…

This is the last run of the week for which the reward is a long tub soak and a day off for yoga on Sunday. It’s here that I cultivate peace; in my mind, my body and my spirit (ok yoga does that too, but not as much as this run). It’s here that I am able to observe the restrictions and obstacles I’ve been facing without fighting or judging and just breathe into it; work to my edge and focus on letting go. In the midst of this challenge I learn to be attentive, patient and focused; this brings me serenity, peace, solace, redemption.

Renewed, I can go out into the world with my perspective reframed, recommitted to my intentions and able to be the charm in other people’s days and an ambassador of peace.

How are you cultivating peace?

Me, Me, Me

My LIFE is a puzzle…

…as I fondle the pieces, I find some that have dazzling shapes and make me say, “OoooH, shiny!”

Others are dark and jagged, broken window panes in a vacant old house.

Still others are bland and formless of countless years spent adrift and floundering.

One odd shape sits to the side yet to find its perfect fit.

What a mottled picture of me; out of focus like an impressionist painting in a gilded but aging frame.

I’ve had incredible encounters with people that have been this exquisite fuel seeking to ignite the glowing embers inside of me. Some have sputtered. Others have sparked a blazing inferno of passion and creativity nearly burning me up… 

…but everything cools like molten lava, a hard crust atop a fiery river flow.

 

My HEART, my heart is a mosaic of bits of broken, colored glass; rough and polished stones;shimmery bits of fancy paper; and WORDS, lots of words held together not by a solder of blackened lead nor heavy gray mortar, but by a fine silk thread from a carpet baggers satchel of dreams…

My SOUL is a grain of sand that became a pearl in my grandmother’s necklace that is the bracelet encircling my wrist, binding me to my past, anchoring me to my present, the fortune of my future…

Upheaval

Change is good. It’s inevitable anyway. Life is full of transitions as we journey through one stage to the next and my latest transition to “empty nester” wasn’t the crashing, wrenching upheaval I thought it might be.  Continue reading

Less is More

“Simplicity allows the true character of our lives to show through.”

~ Duane Elgin

During the last several years I’ve adopted a minimalist lifestyle, in part due to necessity and in larger part as a result of the desire to live more congruently with the thoughts and feelings that were emerging from practicing a more holistic lifestyle.

I like who I am and the life I’ve carved out and it made me weary watching and being around others who seemed to not mind being slaves to their possessions and constantly “keeping up with the Joneses”; there’s a “never enough” feeling that comes from that drama. Unfortunately, the area where I live, and society at large, is so wrapped up in this “look at me” mentality.

My son will be moving on to college soon so the time has come to pare down even more, to downsize. At first I wondered if it was necessary. How could there possibly be less that I need or could use that still filled the spaces? But there is! It’s amazing what we hold on to. There are definitely things that remain “must keep”. I’m still evolving and some of my “things” hold memories too dear to part with yet (even though the thoughts and feelings are inside of me).

But aside from the material bits and baubles that will be edited out during this stage of life spring cleaning, I’m finding that a de-cluttering of the mind has become part of the process. This mental cleanse is sort of a detox for the soul. I think because we assign so much meaning to our possessions, letting them go is also a way of letting go of limiting beliefs about ourselves and also a way of examining self-defeating behaviors (what was I thinking buying purple velvet pants?). Often, we fill our spaces with pretty this ‘n that’s to take up empty feelings, to stave of boredom or even to replace the people who are no longer present. Our clutter, especially our mental clutter, is sort of a barrier that distracts us from taking on new challenges and becoming who we are really meant to be.

It’s utterly liberating to unburden one’s self of the things that no longer serve or define who we are. And that’s really the point; material possessions shouldn’t define us.

“Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”

~ Lao Tzu