A Speed of Soul Encouragement – Acknowledging Grief, Claiming Love, Remembering Radiance
In the wake of January 6th many of us are wrestling with grief, dismay, anger, racial double standard and discouragement. So today I acknowledge what is hard as stone. Lets not candy coat anything. But let us also claim that there is a stronger force, a deeper truth and a wide and active community of good hearted, decent people. Let us remind one another of all the fine and honorable people in our own lives. Let us remind ourselves of how many people got up this morning and continue to make the world a kinder place, one day, one person, three feet around them. Yesterday I wrote my legislators, and encourage others to claim agency and let their voices be heard. But I also encourage digging into what makes your life good. Howard Thurman wrote that “hope is the remembrance of radiance, the assurance that Light will be Light, even when walking in dark places.” I am gathering to myself that remembrance of radiance, the assurance that even in the aftermath of viewing the forces of shadow close up, goodness is still goodness, Light is still Light, and hope is still here and has not been hemmed in. I wrote my legislators, but I also texted a few dear friends to tell them I care, and to express that I am grateful for their presence in my life and in the world.
My encouragement today is to claim agency and to claim love. Text, zoom, call or somehow connect with someone who you think of as a treasure in your life, someone that illuminates your life, who reminds you of the power of love and the remembrance of radiance. Reach out and affirm what keeps saving us – goodness, kindness, faithfulness, gratitude, generosity, hospitality, justice and love…always love. Lay your hand on your heart and know that you also illuminate the lives of others around you. You are also doing what you can each day, in your own way, to make the world around you a kinder place.
Today we acknowledge the shadows, but we lean into the light.
~ Carrie Newcomer, Artist/Musician
pausation: (rare) The action of pausing; temporary cessation of activity; a pause, an intermission; to pause, to hesitate (obselete)
~ from the OED
I’ve been wishing there was a way to hit the pause button on reality for a little while. Maybe a day or two so that everyone can retreat for a little while, and then come back with a little bit of peace in their hearts and minds. We can, of course, do that on our own. But it seems to me would could use a collective break from the interesting times we live in. Since I don’t have magic powers or a magic wand to wave around, perhaps a walk on a foggy, frosty morning will do.
We woke to a wintry wonderland on Monday, one of frost and fog. It’s a beautiful combination although it can be hard on any exposed skin. The cold settles and seeps in faster with the fog as a carrier. I half expected to see my face covered with hoar frost when I returned to the house.
It’s unusual to see the frost climb the trees around here. That’s pretty much what it did Monday morning. Carried by the fog, everything had a frosty coating.
I’m struggling with writing this post. That’s okay. I think we’re all struggling, at least a little, right now and we’re struggling with things bigger than writing a blog post. I’ll share a few things not my own, instead. Like this pretty song by Carrie Newcomer: Speed of Soul.
The stone of hope was recently shared with the Gita class I’m studying with/in. It’s an essay by John Paul Lederach, on The Pause (part of On Being). If you have a few moments and you haven’t already read it, it might help. It’s honest, with hope.
There is an article in Lion’s Roar about Transforming Anger into Love by Thich Nhat Hanh. I found myself smiling at the advice for practicing recognition of what you’re feeling by addressing it in some way. In this article, it was “Hello, anger, my old friend.” I do that frequently, address what’s there as “my old friend.” Just by doing that, it changes. I think that’s what our emotions want most. Some acknowledgement that they are there.
There is an old legend that says we each have a wild, curious twin that was thrown out the window the night we were born, taking much of our vitality with them. If there was something we were meant to do with our few, brief years on Earth, we can be sure that the wild twin is holding the key.
~ Martin Shaw
The next link will take you to Emergence Magazine. It is a story of The Lindworm as told by Martin Shaw. Julie Gibbons, whose Mandala Magic course I’m taking, shared it with us as part of an assignment to draw a self-portrait she referred to as the wild twin. I did not have the supplies I would have liked to use for this assignment, and it didn’t turn out quite as I would have liked, but I will share with you my wild twin.
I am going to try this assignment again in the future, with some masking medium and more intense colors. The circle, or the mandala, is supposed to be a container — perhaps a safe container — for the wild twin, but I chose to let parts of her escape the circle. It seems to me it is important, when dealing with wild creatures, that we allow them a way out if they feel they need it.
This share is a little more on the serious side: The Characteristics of White Supremacy Culture. I share this because it is part of the work we need to do. What I found particularly helpful, after seriously considering the list of characteristics, were the antidotes.
There is a lot happening today. It feels like I could have used that sentence any day over the past four years during which we have rarely seen anything resembling a quiet day. In my opinion, that was intentional, a design to wear us down and wear us out. As always, rest when you can. There is a lot of hard work ahead of us.
One last thing before I go. I recently read something that I will have to paraphrase because I can’t remember who wrote it or where I read it (if it sounds familiar to you and you know who to credit, please let me know so I can insert an attribution in this post). Basically, the theme was not to fear the roars we are hearing. Those roars are the sound of dinosaurs, and dinosaurs make a lot of noise when they are dying. (‘Tis a metaphor, in case that needs to be said/written.)
Thank you so much for stopping by today and wandering around with me. Let’s meet out at the Point for sunset this evening. It’s been a clear, beautiful, bright and sunny day. Sunset is scheduled for 5:05PM. I’ll be there early to take a little walk before the show begins. It’s been relatively warm today, but you’ll still need to bundle up. It’s cold by the water.
Please be safe, be well, be kind, and do your best to live from your heart. ♥
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 1,676) Taking the time to feel gratitude, to remember what is good in life (and sometimes what is good is not always what is easy, but it’s still good). 1,677) M, always. 1,678) Friends who listen deeply, and who don’t hold back. 1,679) All the people who are doing good work. They don’t make the news as often as some others do. 1,680) Art journaling. I’m really enjoying it, especially the messiness of it. I’ve been a perfectionist for so long that’s it a relief to color outside of the lines, so to speak.