It is when we are confronted with poignant reminders of mortality that we become most aware of the strangeness and wonder of our brief life on Earth.
~ Kathleen Basford
If this time is our only time, and it is, then surely we do owe it to ourselves, and to each other, to pay attention, to look deeply, to listen closely, and to respond to all of it, somehow, with love and gratitude.
~ Katrina Kenison
Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
The world is not something separate from you and me; the world, society, is the relationship that we establish or seek to establish between each other. So you and I are the problem, and not the world, because the world is the projection of ourselves, and to understand the world, we must understand ourselves. That world is not separate from us; we are the world, and our problems are the world’s problems.
~ J. Krishnamurti
The hummingbird may be the smallest of birds, but it is also the most fascinating. Anyone who has ever seen this tiny bird is filled with a sense of wonder and joy. Its name comes from the vibration of its wings as it flies or hovers. We have all heard how good it is to whistle while we work, but humming is much more effective. It creates an internal massage, restoring health and balance. This the hummingbird reminds us to do. It reminds us to find joy in what we do and to sing it out.
… Hummingbirds have knowledge of how to use flowers for healing. This includes their fragrance, their color, and herbal qualities as well. They can teach you how to draw the life essence from them and create your own medicines — as in the case of Bach flower remedies and other flower elixirs. They can teach you how to use flowers to heal and win hearts in love.
… No other bird can fly backwards. This reflects hummingbird’s ability to explore the past and to draw from it the nectars of joy. The hummingbird can help you find joy and sweetness in any situation. Its swiftness is always a reminder to grab joy while you can — as quickly as you can.
… the hummingbird is a symbol for accomplishing that which seems impossible. It will teach you how to find the miracle of joyful living from your own life circumstances.
~ Ted Andrews, Animal Speak
… The rabbit is known for its ability to procreate, its fleetness, its ability to make great leaps and hops. It moves primarily by hops and leaps, and individuals with this totem find that their endeavors do so as well. All of these characteristics are significant for those with this totem.
… Although some associate fear with the rabbit, it has wonderful abilities for defense. Those with this totem would do well to apply them to their own life. Rabbits often create forms to use for hiding and resting. To create a form, the rabbit scratches a shallow bowl into the earth or grass that is open in front and in back to enable it to escape if necessary. Rabbit people should plan for possibilities. If a rabbit has shown up, it may indicate a need to do some more planning or check those you have already set in motion. You do not want to box yourself into a corner. Rabbits have a knack for avoiding being seen. They can freeze, holding perfectly still. They know that movement can be detected from great distances by many predators. If you are involved in competition — in work or in play — it will be important not to foreshadow your moves.
Rabbits are also clever at doubling back, making quick and rapid turns. If they need to flee they can be extremely fast. Learning to shift from freezing to great speed is something all with this totem should learn. It will aid your success and enable you to take advantage of opportunities that may only present themselves for brief moments.
Rabbits are vegetarians. Those with this totem need to examine the kinds of foods being consumed. For the greatest health and healing, a vegetarian diet, even if only temporary, will strengthen and heal.
Rabbit can show you how to recognize the signs around you. It can help you to attune to the lunar cycle and recognize the tides of movement within your life. This in turn will enable you to become even more fertile in your life.
~ Ted Andrews, Animal Speak
Have no fear of perfection — you’ll never reach it.
~ Salvador Dali
One of the basic rules of the universe is that nothing is perfect. Perfection simply doesn’t exist…..Without imperfection, neither you nor I would exist.
~ Stephen Hawking
I am glad that I paid so little attention to good advice; had I abided by it I might have been saved from some of my most valuable mistakes.
~ Edna St. Vincent Millay
How to Be a Poet
Make a place to sit down.
Sit down. Be quiet.
You must depend upon
affection, reading, knowledge,
skill—more of each
than you have—inspiration,
work, growing older, patience,
for patience joins time
to eternity. Any readers
who like your poems,
doubt their judgment.
Breathe with unconditional breath
the unconditioned air.
Shun electric wire.
Communicate slowly. Live
a three-dimensioned life;
stay away from screens.
Stay away from anything
that obscures the place it is in.
There are no unsacred places;
there are only sacred places
and desecrated places.
Accept what comes from silence.
Make the best you can of it.
Of the little words that come
out of the silence, like prayers
prayed back to the one who prays,
make a poem that does not disturb
the silence from which it came.
~ Wendell Berry
In spite of its plain appearance, the beauty of the mockingbird is recognized by all. This beauty lies in its song. It has one of the best singing voices of all birds, equal to that of the nightingale. It also has a talent for mimicry. Mockingbirds can imitate other birds, cats, and even dogs.
… The mockingbird can teach you about the power of song and voice. It can help you to learn new languages and sing them just as naturally as one born to them. Anytime the mockingbird shows up as a totem, it is a time to learn to sing out your talents. Regardless of how others may see you, expect people to notice your actions — not your appearance.
The mockingbird can help you to realize your inner talents and sing them forth. It can help you to find your own sacred song in life. By singing that sacred song, you will find your life more rewarding and more significant. Most people, even if they know their inner sacred song (life purpose), are afraid to act upon it. The mockingbird can assist with this.
… The ability to stimulate responses in others is part of what the mockingbird can teach you. It can help you to flush out injurious insects around you in your life and see where and who they are. The mockingbird will help you to recognize subtle clues that others may miss. You hear the true song of others.
Whenever the mockingbird arrives, look for opportunities to sing forth your own song. Follow your own path. Learn to take what you can and apply your own creative imagination and intuition to it, so that you sing it forth in the manner and tone that is most harmonious for you and your life.
~ Ted Andrews, Animal Speak