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Sometimes

It is the end of a busy week. It might be the busiest since I came home from Spokane. I don’t coach ice hockey any more, but I help in several ways. For example, I am helping a young man who coached with me several years ago get a hockey related business off the ground. I also facilitate coaching clinics which help coaches with their work. In Canada, this is a time of the year when hockey is busy. It is important to take a break, a Sabbath from the busyness and business.

I came across this poem by Hermann Hesse who is better known as an author of fiction such as Steppenwolf, Siddhartha, and The Journey to the East. He was a wonderful writer of prose writing in a poetic and mystic voice.

The poem reminds me to stop and pause, to listen attentively to the world and my self. It is in the mindfulness that I hear the questions being asked by the world and me. It is in those silences that the world and I create together speaking to each other in richness in our silences.

Sometimes, when a bird cries out,
Or the wind sweeps through a tree,
Or a dog howls in a far off farm,
I hold still and listen a long time.

My soul turns and goes back to the place
Where, a thousand forgotten years ago,
The bird and the blowing wind
Were like me, and were my brothers.

My soul turns into a tree,
And an animal, and a cloud bank.
Then changed and odd it comes home
And asks me questions. What should I reply?

Inspiration Point

Inspiration Point.

We carry umbrellas to protect us from the rain. Rain can feel soothing on the body. It cools and warms. We walk in it to gain fresh perspective on life. We splash in the puddles to recall childhood.

Walking in the rain is walking through life which the link suggests in a wonderful way. We are having a conversation as we walk in the rain listening for what life has to say. When we are mindful, we hear the wisdom in rain drops. We are living into the questions that life is.

Be a Player, not a Victim

Be a Player, not a Victim.

We use the words responsibility and accountability interchangeably, as if they mean the same thing. Certainly, the two words are connected in ways, but providing a response and being responsible are internal emerging from the person. Acc0untability is external. Someone else makes a judgement about our words and actions.

Accountability also connects as we give an account of our self. We describe who we are in giving this account. We take responsibility for who we are, what we say, and what we do. We take responsibility for how we are living in both telling and living our personal story.

Accountability suggests someone is more expert than we are in living our lives. It also suggests that there is a certainty about this expertise.

Machado wrote “Wanderer, your footsteps are the road, and nothing more; wanderer there is not road, the road is made by walking.” We accept responsibility for walking the road one step at a time in the company of others.

Travel Theme: Inviting

Travel Theme: Inviting.

Some of the reading I have done for my dissertation has focused on the idea that teaching is an invitation into learning. I recall cold Alberta days when I would take out books and read. I never left the warm confines of the house, yet I traveled the world.

Teaching and learning are invitational. The John Muir quote in Ese’s post is easily reworded. It is not just the mountains calling. It is the world and the universe. Subjects come alive and speak to us when they hold meaning.

Teaching cannot guarantee learning. What it can do is provide spaces where learning happens as students find the subjects speaking to them. We, in turn, respond and a life-long conversations are struck up. Living and learning entangle and are inseparable.

Wordless Wednesday: And You?

Wordless Wednesday: And You?.

Rumi‘s poetry becomes meaningful quotes very easily. It seems in the quotes nothing is lost and much is gained. Perhaps, it is because the quotes often become questions opening up spaces in living that we had not anticipated.

Poetry is an internal journey. It asks questions in ways that even when  speaking of the external world we turn inwards and seek the answers. It is in the pauses, much like when we pause in living, that something reveals itself.

Amidst the busyness of life we chase missing what is seeking us. When we pause, what is seeking us finds us and speaks to us. We open ourselves and let go in those pauses. It is in the pauses that we can be fully present to the world and our self.

Live in Wonder

Live in Wonder.

The world is a place of wonder. It is poetry in its most indefinable ways and that is why we need pauses between the words. It is in those pauses that the wonder soaks in and we can live in wonder. If the world had no spaces and only noise, we would be overwhelmed. The spaces are an inviting into the most precious relationships we can possibly have with the world, those we share the world, and all matter that matters.

When we pause and listen in the stillness and quiet, we are present to all that is holy and real. The world is made whole in those moments.

The Wine and the Cup -Rumi

The Wine and the Cup -Rumi.

Rumi‘s poetry resonates through the centuries. This short verse reminded me that life is the way we are open up to it. What we receive depends on the number and quality of windows allowing light to enter life.

Gadamer referred to the questions we ask, which open up life, as eloquent . We enter questions as though they are living without presupposed answers ready for exploring.

The moonlight shines into our questions and the size of the cup is of our making. The quality of life is the quality of the windows in our life. Do we age like good wine as we mature? Are we mindful to the character of our living?

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