It is Friday– a cold December Friday– in Albany, New York. The former DeWitt Clinton ballroom is as white as the glistening snow on the sidewalks outside. Upstate New York can be a cold, unpredictable mistress, but the warmth I feel tonight is not from the heating system alone. I am standing on the altar [...]
by Mary Oliver
You do not have to be good
You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles repenting
You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.
Tell me about your despair,
Yours, and I will tell you about mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the soft pebbles of rain are moving across the landscapes
Over the prairies and the deep trees
The mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese
High in the clear blue air,
Are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely
The world offers itself to your imagination
Calls to you like the wild geese,
Harsh and exciting-
Over and over announcing
In the family of things.
A friend asked me just the other day, do you like to write things down?
I said – I do, but only if I feel inspired.
Now I’m thinking, why couldn’t we write things down more often? If you already do, I think that’s amazing and I would like to join you. If only to bring all the thoughts we have in our heads out into the open, to let them breathe a little bit and get some sunshine on their faces. Maybe that will help us notice which thoughts have been hiding in dark places, not wanting to be seen, and which thoughts need to be exercised more regularly like a young golden retriever who needs to run around outside to grow healthy and strong.
“To get rid of violence ask yourself if you are totally nonviolent in every thought, action and behavior of yours.”
Thanks to Kaye Lee for submitting a link to a Deepak Chopra interview in which he answers the big questions we spiritual beings on a human path ask. We couldn’t embed the video, but you can view the full video here.
Below is just a short taste of some of the things that Deepak touches on in the interview.
I often don’t remember what people say.
It’s not that I’m not listening – I’ve been called a pretty good listener, or I like to think I am anyway! It’s rare, however, that I remember exactly what someone says. The feeling of the conversation, yes, but specifics, no. So on the rare occasion that I do,
it is usually a life-shifting earth-shaking sort of phrase. The story behind one of these phrases is a good one, and one that has changed my life into an existence that is more peaceful, faith-filled, and one that can rest in trust that all things are connected.
We were clean and clear and calm and free splashing in that warm water and there was nothing more to hope for other than maybe some chicken and pineapple sandwiches for lunch after drying off, and a sunburn that didn’t hurt too much when the cool water from the shower that night landed on our rosy shoulders.