27 February 2013

The Green & Gracious Mirror

Mmmm... the first almost Spring days brought me not just one but two walks outside this past weekend...

I love to walk in the cold of late winter.  The fresh green air has a way of surfacing important and overarching themes, while dispersing the mundane and petty.  As I walk, worries shed and creativity and motivation take their place. It is a very strong medicine for me.

Stillness, aliveness, newness, deadness.  It is all there in the Earth just before she awakens to Spring.  And all that is inside each one of us too. Nature invites us to learn from her, and to find our connection back to ourselves through seeing her as a reflection of our own inner world.

The past two winters have gone by quickly for me. I cannot believe that it is almost March, and that summer plans are already being discussed and put on the calendar. K & I tend to hibernate in Winter, we're not snow folks, so I am already dreaming of wildflowers on the hillsides of the Columbia River Gorge, and that cleansing wind.

I saw this quote today:
“He who is outside his door already has the hardest part of his journey behind him.” — Dutch proverb 
There have been very important days in my life, when important events occurred, that began with my simply saying to myself, "Just put on your shoes and go outside."  Which meant I walked...

And looked up....

And saw new things and beautiful things.

May your day bring something fresh and new and true, and may that bring you closer to your self.

Practice for Bringing on the New

If you can go outside...

Put on some walking shoes and your coat and hat and scarf (if appropriate),
Drink a big glass of water
Open your door
Go outside.

Look at the sky,

Look at a tree branch, notice its beauty

Listen for birdsong, hear the kindred spirit there,

And Walk and Remember
Remember that you are a child of the Earth and that you don't have to earn the right to live this life. Every being alive has the right to just be.  And that includes you.

So walk...
and breathe...

If you can't go outside...

Find a window to look out of,
Look at the sky,
Or a tree branch,
And just be, just watch and breathe.

Fill up with beauty,
Allow yourself to feel light and loved.

13 February 2013

Love Lost, Love Found, Love All Around

This is always an interesting week in my office, Valentine's Day/week/season, that is. I don't know how to tell people to just not worry about it so much, because they will anyway, but I try. And there are often pesky memories.  What I do end up saying a lot are things like,

"It's worth waiting for."
                                                                                "Wait until it isn't a choice."

I have been fortunate in my life to know many, many people who are deeply in love. I see it all the time, all around me, the support and connection of commitment that comes without effort. Not that the happiness of the relationship comes without effort (for that is the work that bears the greatest fruit), but that the commitment itself is not a question.  There is a with and a we that becomes as natural and normal as... well, anything else in life.

In these days of so much kind-of connection via the Internet, it seems even harder to let life lead. To just put effort into the things you enjoy, get out of the house, and let love find you can seem impossible.

Even if you have found your partner, you can lose precious time to the computer when you could be holding hands, smiling at each other, helping out, or expressing appreciation or support.

Whether you're single or partnered, think of this this Valentine's Day:  Make yourself happy first and the relationship you find will always bring you back to that version of yourself: the person you were that day when you first knew, when you first felt it, when you first realized that you were getting to know the person you would be with for the rest of your life.  Then you get the best of both people: a happy, loving you, and the person you fell in love with when you were most at ease in yourself.

Recipe for the Experience of Love:

Take a moment when you would be doing something else, and lay down on your bed or on the floor.
Get comfy. Put a pillow under your knees, make sure you are nice and warm.

Now soften your whole body, your whole mind, your whole heart.
And again.
And again.

Luxuriate in doing absolutely nothing but softening, melting, being.
Accept absolutely everything in your conscious awareness.  Every thought, every itch, every sound.

Be the center in the storm.
And breathe.
And soften.
And breathe.

And love.

Happy Valentine's, and thank you for reading!
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