RSS Feed

Tag Archives: community

The Guest House

I know I have posted this poem before, but it has a beautiful message. Rumi reminds me I cannot accept only the good that comes into my life. When the darker emotions show themselves at the door of my life, I should welcome them and accept them as a guide from beyond.

Like my delightful emotions, the darker ones are fleeting and temporary. While they are with me, the metaphor of a guesthouse allows me to experience them more fully and be mindful to what they mean at that point in my life.

In those moments, those closest to me help me understand what each arrival may mean. We can ask questions without presuming the answers in advance.

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.

Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

My head is…

**Image via Wallpapers App; text added by Natalie

Source: My head is…

Natalie’s post is a wonderful quote from Rumi. What I do not know is far more than what I know. Even what I think I know, is less than what I can actually know.

Even two people standing side-by-side experience the world differently. As they each look back, they recall what imprinted itself on them, but not the other.

As I live and exit each moment, I forget good portions of what I experienced. As I move on, I forget more and more. All that is left is a fainter and fainter impression of what I thought I knew.

The best I can do is to experience each moment as mind(fully) as possible and to enjoy the company of the other in that moment.

When Death Comes

Although the title sounds eerie, Mary Oliver‘s poem is about how we can live life. To live a life as fully as she describes, we can seek to be mindful and attentive to each moment as we live through it.d

Several years ago, Kathy and I drove out to pick up her mother who had a form of non-verbal dementia. It was about 5:30 AM and the sun was just peeking up over the horizon as we drove into it on the way home. As I drove, I felt a movement beside me and turned to see my mother-in-law smiling and pointing at the fields with freshly cut hay laying on the fields. Even thought she did not speak, the moment somehow spoke to her as it reminded her of days on the farm during haying season.

Thich Nhat Hanh reminds us that we find the extraordinary in the ordinary. That experienced reminded me of what I might otherwise take-for-granted: a beautiful morning in the company of others.

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measles-pox;

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth
tending as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it is over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

If you have built castles in the air,

“If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.” ~ Henry David Thoreau         Artist~Catrin Welz-Stein
Text & image source: Moonlight Serenade https://web.facebook.com/Moonlight-Serenade-228504310532112/

Source: If you have built castles in the air,

We need images for our imaginations, but it is equally important to give them foundations. In this way, our castles are sustainable.

When we put foundations under our dreams and castles, we do so by being present and mindful. We are aware of the hard work that it takes to build those castles and the building requires the help of others, just as they build their castles with our help.

The Wisdom of Buddha

If you light a lamp for somebody,  it will also brighten your path. Buddha. It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.

When we show the way for others, we show the way for ourselves.

Source: The Wisdom of Buddha

The Buddha left many thoughts for us to explore and understand in our lives. The link to Lara and Tina‘s post shares several quotes and pictures, underscoring how love and care for others begins with love and care for ourselves.

When we are mindful and attentive to our self, we shine a light for others and we can be mindful and attentive to them.

Langston Hughes

As far back as I can remember, I have adored poetry. I’m especially drawn to the works of poets who courageously dive deeply into their stories… their journeys through life. These are m…

Source: Langston Hughes

Similar to Gina, I enjoy poetry. I wrote poetry in junior high school. When I began teaching Language Arts, I taught poetry. During difficult times in my teaching career, I returned to writing poetry.

I loved Langston Hughes‘ poems and used them each year. His poems were short and students discerned their themes, such as holding fast to one’s dreams, social justice, and life’s challenges, and relate to them fairly easily.

Langston Hughes wrote poetry that reflected both his experiences and the culture of the African-American community. This reflected both the celebrations and suffering that people experienced, which are often intertwined with each other.

A Smile Can Make A Difference

Happy Wednesday! Remember to smile, not only for yourself, but to bring happiness to others. Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

Source: A Smile Can Make A Difference

I know it is not Wednesday, but a smile can improve the moment and day of each person we encounter. Our smile might be the only ray of sunshine that enters the day of another person.

Also, smiles raise questions about what we are thinking. I recall several years ago being asked by a principal what I was smiling about. I was not happy with his actions that day, but I reached down inside and found a smile.

Thich Nhat Hanh reminds us that we find the extraordinary in the ordinary. When we are mindful and present in each moment, we can do that and smile in ways that make our lives and those of others better.

 

 

%d bloggers like this: