All of us have experienced moments of profound connectedness — the caress of a spring breeze on bare skin, the feeling in our chests when we look into another’s eyes with love, the holy awe of gazing at a star-strewn summer sky.
There is greatness right beneath the surface of every day life, and every once in awhile we catch a glimpse of it. Those are the sudden, lucid flashes when life beguiles us out of the prison of our minds and leads us right into the moment. On our mats and on our meditation cushions, we begin to experience this deep connectedness as an everyday occurrence. ~ Meditations from the Mat, by Rolf Gates & Katrina Kenison
Repetition is not failure. Ask the waves, ask the leaves, ask the wind.
There is no expected pace for inner learning. What we need to learn comes when we need it, no matter how old or young, no matter how many times we have to start over, no matter how many times we have to learn the same lesson. We fall down as many times as we need to, to learn how to fall and get up. We fall in love as many times as we need to, to learn how to hold and be held. We misunderstand the many voices of truth as many times as we need to, to truly hear the choir of diversity that surrounds us. We suffer our pain as often as is necessary for us to learn how to break and how to heal. No one really likes this, of course, but we deal with our dislike in the same way, again and again, until we learn what we need to know about the humility of acceptance.
– Mark Nepo, found in The Book of Awakening; September 23rd.
I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.
Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.
So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s every made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is : art, or love, or work or family or life.
Whatever it is your scared of doing. Do it.
Make your mistakes, next year and forever.
~ Neil Gaiman
Permission granted to keep choosing yourself over your to-do list. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself despite the world telling you to provide, care, and hold every single thing. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself despite being pulled away countless times each day, from your center. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself over the gremlins in your head that say ” more, do more!” Permission granted to keep choosing yourself even when dust is visible on every counter of your home.
Yes. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself especially when you have a crazy idea that just might be calling you to a new beginning. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself especially when you are tires, exhausted, and need some alone time. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself especially when your heart needs to hear your voice. Permission granted to keep choosing yourself especially when your intuition is guiding you to stillness.
Permissions granted to keep choosing yourself.
You are gold.
You are worth choosing.
And you are the one you’ve been waiting for.
You've got it all wrong.
You didn't come here to master unconditional love. This is where you came from and where you'll return.
You came here to learn personal love.
Infused with divinity.
Lived through the grace of stumbling.
Demonstrated through the beauty of... messing up.
You didn't come here to be perfect, you already are.
You came here to be gorgeously human. Flawed and fabulous.
And rising again into remembering.
But unconditional love? Stop telling that story.
Love in truth doesn't need any adjectives.
It doesn't require modifiers.
It doesn't require the condition of perfection.
It only asks you to show up.
And do your best.
That you stay present and feel fully.
That you shine and fly and laugh and cry and hurt and heal and fall and get back up and play and work and live and die as YOU.
– Courtney A. Walsh
Live Slow Enough
Live slow enough and there is only the beginning of time.
Follow anything in its act of being – a snowflake falling, ice melting, a loved one waking – and we are ushered into the ongoing moment of the beginning, the quiet instant from which each breath starts. What makes this moment so crucial is that it continually releases the freshness of living. The key to finding this moment and all its freshness, again and again, is in slowing down.
Often, when we are inconvenienced, we are being asked to slow down. When we are delayed in our travel or waiting for a check in a restaurant, we are being asked to open up and look around. When we find ourselves stalled in our very serious and ambitious plans, we are often being asked to re-find the beginning of time. Unfortunately, we are all so high-paced, running so fast to where we want to be, that many of us are forced to slow down through illness or breakage. In this, we are such funny creatures. If we could see ourselves from far enough away, we would seem like a colony of insects running into things repeatedly: thousands of little determined beings butting into obstacles, shaking our little heads and bodies, and running into things again.
Like the Earth that carries us, the ground of our being moves so slowly we take it for granted. But if you should feel stalled, numb or exhausted from the trials of your life, simply slow your thoughts to the pace of cracks widening, slow your heart to the pace of the earth soaking up rain, and wait for the freshness of the beginning to greet you.
~ Mark Nepo, Book of Awakening February 1st
What I Like About Yoga
What I like abot yoga is that it is not based on faith, it is based on experience. I know from experience that I carry stress in my body, & the postures are ways, not only of releasing that stress, but confronting it, experiencing it, and inderstanding it. You have to learn to accept it, to live with it, and to let it go. You can apply that to a posture, or a fear, or whatever it is that is standing in your way of being at peace. The postures are one way of understanding these bloackages, if you apply some wisdom to the practice, if you pay attention. ~ Meditations from the Mat
The Courage of the Seed
All the buried seeds
crack open in the dark
the instant they surrender
to a process they can't see.
What a powerful lesson in the beginning of spring. All around us, everything small and bured surrenders to a process that non of the buried parts can see. And this innate surrender allows everything edible and fragrant to break ground into a life of light that we call spring.
In nature, we are quietly given countless models of how to give ourselves over to what appears dark and hopeless, but which ultimately is an awakening that is beyond all imagining. This moving thgough the dark into blossom is the threshold of God.
As a seed buried in the earth cannot imagine itself as an orchid or hyacinth, neither can a heart packed with hurt imagine itself loved or at peace. The courage of the seed is that once cracking, it cracks all the way. ~ April 5th, Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo