It's easy to forget that we are all perfect in our own design. Sometimes we muck it up with habits and choices that do not serve us. 

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The Meaning of Resurrection Especially in These Times

easter
First you must realize you are asleep, then you wake up, then you die so you may be born. You cannot be born until you die and you cannot die until you wake up.
  -  
Jungian psychology


There are traditions across the world which celebrate Easter and the joy of Christ being risen. Storytelling is one of the most ancient natural medicines we have for the healing of our hearts and our soul. The Easter story is so powerful yet it deepens who we are in our humanity when we allow the story to be personal for ourselves. How can we allow the Christ consciousness to be born within us? 

During these unpredictable and uncertain times we are living in, we are all called to rise up. We have a profound, once in a lifetime moment to seize this window of a universal time out to quiet the noise in our minds and allow a greater connection of God to be experienced in our lives. 

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290 Hits

Compassion And Connection: Fulfilling Our Divine Purpose!

compassion

As spiritual souls having a human experience, our Divine purpose on earth is to actualize into the best version of ourselves. We do this through service to others. 

Even if you don’t consider yourself a healer, we are all here to support the world’s healing. We do so by focusing on our own alignment. When we personally are aligned with the Universe, we are bringing more harmony to the world and helping to heal the collective whole. 

Compassion refers to the desire to reduce the suffering of others, and we are acting to benefit others consciously. Just as healing the world begins with healing ourselves, compassion for others is easier when we also have compassion for ourselves. We are inextricable from the whole! 

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174 Hits

Compassionate Action: A Radical Approach To Giving Back!

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The other day, I was on one of my rare excursions outside our home at the local grocery store. I was there with my basket of gluten-free bread, eggs, milk (okay, fine, I had a few gluten-free chocolate chip cookies in there, too!). Above the checkout area was a large, handwritten sign lettered in Sharpie that said:

“Please be kind to the staff. They are here to serve you during these trying times.”

At first, I thought, “How nice!” After all, I adore and appreciate any intentional reminder for kindness and love. 

But then it occurred to me that something must have happened to require someone to take the time to write the sign and put it up. Actually, something must have happened more than once. 

How many customers had snapped at the cashiers over the past 12 months? (I actually asked the cashier and she told me a few nasty stories!) 

How many people had sworn at the stock clerks because there was no toilet paper left on the shelves? 

How many complaints, angry voices, and frustrations had been taken out on others?

And suddenly, that sweet sign made me sad because of the hurt and suffering that was behind its creation.  

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154 Hits

Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: Two Forms of Compassion

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What is compassion but drifting in the immensity of life with an open heart? We bump into and pass by so many torn and budding lives along the way. Some are like us, many are not—on the surface, but under it all, we remain the same ounce of spirit carried in skin and bone. One of our jobs, then, is to learn how to relate to the cascade of others that rise and fall around us. The practice of compassion is how we learn that we are each other. And the practice of expression is how the heart knows itself.

Early on in life, there is an initiation into the practice of compassion through the commonality of our experience with others. If I have suffered and healed from a broken heart, then when I witness your heart breaking, I can easily identify with what you’re going through. If you’ve lost your job and come into my life when I’m laid off, we can easily meet in our common struggle through adversity. If I’ve felt betrayed by a friend or loved one and I’m with you when you are betrayed, we can quickly form a bond that will help each other through. This sort of compassion, based on our common experience, is an ongoing apprenticeship that never ends.

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138 Hits

Embodying Light

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“For there is always light,
if only we’re brave enough to see it,
if only we’re brave enough to be it.”
—Amanda Gorman

With these words, in her inaugural poem “The Hill We Climb,” Amanda Gorman opened the door wide so that the light could shine in, in all its radiance and power. Her words echoed out from the podium around the world and across the centuries. Standing invisible beside her were immigrants and enslaved people, civil rights activists and suffragists, Parkland students and pacifists, poets and day laborers. All those who have envisioned a freer, more compassionate world and lived and died for it were there in spirit to witness a shift in consciousness becoming visible at last.

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221 Hits

What's In Your Way?

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There was a battle ship out in the waters, and the captain was out on the bridge and observed that he could see lights and there was another ship in the distance, so he said to the signalman “Please send the message that you need to change your course by 20 degrees.” And so they got a reply back immediately, “you change your course by 20 degrees”. So then the captain said to the signalman again, “You tell whoever that they are to move the course... It's a directive by 20 degrees.” And the message came back, “you move by 20 degrees.” Finally, the Captain said, “You tell them that we are a battleship and to move their course by 20 degrees.” And the message came back, “we are a Lighthouse.”

A lighthouse. Immovable. Unshakable. 

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318 Hits

Breathing Peace, Breathing Hope

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A lot of people have felt they couldn’t breathe.”—Van Jones

Last November, when a new President and Vice President were elected in the U.S., many of us cried tears of relief. We felt we could breathe again, even if just for a moment. Not that the huge problems that face this country had been solved, but lighter, more compassionate voices were speaking at the national level. Possibility was appearing once again, where impossibility had ruled. Hope was arising within us, and the distant dream of a peaceful resolution of divisions seemed somehow closer. Now, in the wake of last week’s violent break-in at the Capitol building in Washington, it is even more important to hold onto that dream and to move forward in peace.

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307 Hits

Repairing our Hearts – Healing with the RAIN of Compassion

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Living in a fear-based society fuels the trance of separation and unworthiness. This talk explores how we can bring an engaged compassionate presence to the suffering of this trance—in our inner work, and more broadly, in healing our culture (from the 2020 IMCW 7-day Silent New Year Retreat).

I must have been incredibly simple or drunk or insane to sneak in to my own house and steal money, to climb over the fence and take my own vegetables.  But no more.  I’ve gotten free of that ignorant fist that was pinching and twisting my secret self.

The universe and the light of the stars come through me.  I am the crescent moon put up over the gate to the festival.

Rumi
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The One New Year's Resolution I Hope You Make...And Keep

2021 This one New Year’s resolution can change your life, heal your relationships, create health and well being, and heal our planet.

One of the most important aspects of Inner Bonding is opening to a compassionate intention to learn. I think a lot about love and compassion. Compassion is often more than people think it is.

Compassion does include the standard definition: the ability to feel empathy with another or others who are suffering, to be moved by the suffering and to want to help alleviate it.

 

But compassion is so much more…

It’s my experience that like love, we don’t generate it within ourselves; we open to it. Compassion, like love, peace, joy, grace and true wisdom, are gifts of spirit that we experience when we are open to learning about loving ourselves and others. These gifts are what the universe is. Compassion is a bright, light, loving energy that deeply connects you with yourself, others, animals and the planet.

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320 Hits

Beauty Needs No Explanation 

beauty_will Beauty Needs No Explanation

Beauty
Doesn’t need
An explanation

It is unnecessary
To describe
What is plainly seen

Beauty requires
No proof
Or evaluation

Judging what is genuine
As good or bad
Right or wrong
More or less
Is wasted attention

One’s attention
Could be on
The Beauty
Instead

Beauty does not need
To be interpreted to be validated

Beauty
Doesn’t explain
It just is what it is

Everything in creation is beautiful.

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230 Hits

Kids Have Plenty To Say

group-of-smiling-preschool-students-picture-id1168223108 Kids Have Plenty To Say

As a full-time kid’s musician since 1990, I have the blessing of being with thousands of kids every year.

Kids have never said to me directly
“Teach me something”

But they ALWAYS
Have something urgent
To tell me

Maybe one of the best methods of teaching
Is listening

Acknowledging
What kids have to say.
Seeing them
and their ideas as valuable
Interesting
and inspired

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313 Hits

The Most Precious Possession 

IMG_5664-_20201007-215134_1 The Most Precious Possession

I had just finished a music performance at a preschool in Minneapolis. The children were playing on the playground while I was loading my car. Lucy who is barely three was standing by the chain link fence with her hand reaching out to me. As I walked over to her, she gently said, “Here, this is for you.” “You can take it home.”

What else could I say except “Thank You!” Doing my best to echo the sweet sincerity that the tiny white pebble from the playground was given.

The object had no intrinsic value, but the gift was priceless.
Kings cannot possess riches as precious as the generosity of Lucy’s pebble.

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337 Hits

I don’t care how spiritual you are

family-praying-picture-id498709225 Let’s be kind, and humble

Do you want to know what makes me swoon?

Beautiful, insightful, profound writing.

I recently discovered this essay on Facebook, written by Taylor Rose Godfrey and have gotten her permission to share it with all of you. She really dives deep into the heart of true spirituality.

“I don’t care how spiritual you are. How long you can melt in the sweat lodge. How many peyote journeys that have blown your mind, or how well you can hold crow pose. Honestly. I don’t. I don’t care what planets fall in what houses on your birth chart, how many crystals you have or how vegan your diet is.

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1796 Hits

The Power of Despair

iStock-1091233350 “What I am cannot hurt me.” Will Hale

I have selected a few quotes related to The Power of Despair from my One Light, Many Reflections collection. Savor each idea by having three or four breaths between reading each quote to contemplate and expand the meaning to yourself.

“If you are curious how to find pure love, I recommend going to a place within yourself that is so despairing all you want to do is die and then find something you are willing to live for.” Will Hale 12-8-14

“It is easy to die for what you believe in but it takes real courage to live for what you love.” Will Hale 5-24-14

“The emotions of grief come in two tones, the agony of loss and the joy of gratitude, both come from love.” Will Hale 12-15-12

“You can’t really kill yourself, because the part you can kill is not yourself.” Will Hale 12-28-14

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438 Hits

Caretakers of Consciousness

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We have a responsibility, those of us born on Earth at this key transitional moment in the planet’s history. A powerful and sacred responsibility. And that is to hold the dream of a harmonious world and a loving human species in our hearts at all times and to act accordingly: with love, with kindness. To keep our minds clear of fearful thought forms and influences, which are becoming more and more prevalent and strident now. Conspiracy theories of all kinds are beginning to dominate social media, and hatred of “other” is growing. Divisiveness is encroaching on compassion in the human experience. When we separate off into smaller and smaller groups, suspicious of one another, we are falling further and further away from our purpose in being here.

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415 Hits

Sitting Shiva for America

woman-yoga-sitting-lotus-position-with-shiva-goddess-figure-picture-id672950304 Sitting Shiva for America

I woke up this morning feeling a sense of great loss, loss for so many things…the loss of civility in our country, the loss of life from Covid, and cancer, and guns, and innocent black men and women being killed, innocent protesters being gunned down, the violence in our streets.

The seemingly impossible divide between left and right.

The loss of stability and security.

The loss of freedom to hug our friends, and so much more.

Later, when I looked at my Facebook feed I found more loss.

Friends mourning the loss of loved ones, beloved pets, careers that were once promising that have disappeared.

Grief. Mourning. Fear. Uncertainty.

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526 Hits

Can You Keep On Loving?

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If you believe that love is humanity’s greatest hope and clearest path to a more compassionate inclusive planet, how are you feeling right now? When people seem to be hating one another with greater intensity. When rage and violent outbursts are becoming more common. Those who wear masks vs. those who refuse to; those who believe Black Lives Matter vs. those who deny it. Science vs. religion, Democrats vs. Republicans, health and safety vs. economic “recovery.” Individuals of different races, ages, nationalities, and belief systems fighting over statues and guns and face coverings. Where does unconditional love and kindness come into play in the midst of all this? Can we love our neighbor if our neighbor hates us?

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425 Hits

Meeting Racism, Homophobia and Close-Mindedness With Love and Compassion

our-style-is-influenced-by-our-upbringing-picture-id1179747953 Meeting Racism, Homophobia and Close-Mindedness With Love and Compassion

Hate, negativity, close-mindedness — none of this is new. Being heavily tattooed with big holes in my earlobes, a skateboarder and a fan of punk/hardcore music since my teenage years has left me all too familiar with judgmental people, especially growing up in a small town before these things started to become somewhat socially acceptable.

Disapproving looks, comments under the breath, or, in some cases, blatantly to my face, have been commonplace throughout my life and have led me time and again to contemplate why people feel the need, or, that they have the right to cast judgments and write someone off based solely on outer appearances or personal lifestyle choices.

There’s really no simple answer. Each person is a unique individual with a unique set of circumstances that has led them to become the person that they are today. One thing I’ve learned about myself however, and my own judgments (because yes, I too am human and have no shortage of them), is that they’re almost always rooted in fear.

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467 Hits

Why Did This Happen?

shop-window-broken-picture-id1219212444 Why Did This Happen?

Why did this happen? Why did that happen?

Why is it still happening?

Why do I feel this way?

Why does anyone do anything?


I have an answer to the question, WHY?

Why?

Because I chose an answer for myself.

A foundation to my answer is,

EVERY INTENTION IS FOR GOOD

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527 Hits

Broken Open and Broken

daffodil-narcissus-picture-id482437547 Broken Open and Broken

It is impossible to know why some of us are broken open while some of us are just broken. If we knew how to invoke the difference, we could change the course of history. Even within one life, we can experience transformative moments of being broken open and, at other times, we just suffer being broken. More than staying in the unanswerable tangle of why some of us grow while some of us stay stuck, it is more important to move from one to the other. When broken open, we grow. When just broken, we endure. And the crucial calling of all relationship is to inhabit what we learn from being broken open to help us endure those times when we are just broken. Essential to the practice of compassion is that, when broken open, we find a way to help those who are broken, and to be humble enough when broken to ask for the help of those who are broken open. In this ongoing way, the light of kindness fills the hole of every pain. We must resist the trial of fairness and the comparison of suffering and devote ourselves to completing each other as we tumble through time.

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474 Hits