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Archive for May, 2016

 

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May All Beings Be Happy, May All Beings Be Safe, May All Beings Everywhere Know Peace.

I did not set out to write about peace on Memorial Day but the two serendipitously collided. My writing practice this morning was prompted by an inquiry into my deepest life intentions.

My own path to peace has not been strewn with rose petals or guided by rainbows. Peace has been dug in dark trenches of all that is not peace.

The only equation I could come up with as a child was anger equals violence. Weapons were the back of a hand or a wooden spoon. The threat of violence was equally terrifying as in “don’t make me get my belt.”

Home was a mine field. Explosions could be triggered by eyes that shifted the wrong way or words you could not choke back that muttered through the breath. A smile could be wiped off your face by any means necessary.

The last remnants of a regime that spared the rod and spoiled the child reigned supreme. I found no solace for the perpetrators were the protectors. When violence and threats are used to maintain order and control fear is the fallout.

Without ammunition of my own the only defense was an inner armor. Solid walls of protection were erected to keep feelings out, all of them. The amount of tension required to build an internal fortress is colossal.

The little girl frozen in fear still lives in me. The weight of her armor makes my heart weary for rest. Yet the armor has been the only protection against a world perceived of threat. This world within me is no different than the world around me.

The walls can not be penetrated by force or sheer will. A current of tears melts feelings frozen in fear. Feelings that crash and tumble until the waters of a weary heart can come to rest.

When the shield dissolves, peace abides.

Without defense, love can reign.

When weapons lay down, beauty abounds.

If we let ourself travel clear through to the other side of what peace is not, peace is possible.

Not only for me,
but peace is possible,
for us all.

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My head drops to the floor every morning, a ritual that has taken place for the past twenty years. I bow to bring the breath of my heart in rhythm with gratitude.

Gratitude is not always easy for me to find, even in the midst of abundance. What am I grateful for as I lay in the darkness of the world between dreaming and waking?

My morning prayer is in gratitude for my body. As I thank the breath that fills my body I remember the medicine I wrote of years ago. The following is an excerpt from A Structure for Spirit. 

“Do you know anyone who would work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, day in and day out, never taking a break and never once receiving a thank you for their tireless efforts? The jobs required to sustain your life every day are endless.

The guided meditation Attitude of Gratitude (below) will cultivate a sacred appreciation of your body. 

What is one thing you can do today to show appreciation for your body and honor its needs?”

an offering from A Structure for Spirit

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