Everything Matters

A few months ago I listened to a webcast.  The speaker compared life’s experiences to climbing a ladder.

“Every rung is important,” he said, “Every rung is equal.”

At first, the idea of “everything matters equally” felt paralyzing.  Taking even the simplest of actions could be life-or-death in a world where all is so completely important. I might do it wrong.

Then I heard the words differently.

Everything in life has equal meaning. 

At first, this didn’t seem logical.  Holding a door open for someone and saving someone’s life has equal meaning? 

Yes, it does. 

Last Fall I was deep in grief over the deaths of my Dad and my cousin.  The feelings came and went, unpredictable tides that left me feeling helpless and lost.  On a day when things were especially colourless and I desperately needed to feel better, I took myself to the library.

As I walked towards the door, it swung open and someone came out.  Their arms were loaded with books, a balancing act, but when they saw me they paused and waited, holding the door open wide.  They looked me in the eyes and smiled.  I thanked them and walked through. 

Holding the door open for someone and smiling, a momentary gesture frequently repeated, nothing really in the larger movements of life. Except this someone, a stranger, smiled for me as if we knew and loved each other well.

That brief action was pure kindness, a connection that gave me light and space and breath.  I was offered a moment of love that buoyed me for the rest of the day.

I don’t know what happens as my actions and choices ripple outwards.  I don’t know who I affect every day in my life.

I do know I want my life’s touch to be as kind and loving as the gift I received that day.

If everything is important and equal, if everything has meaning, I choose to do my days with kindness and love for the people around me and for myself.

I Am A Contrary

cat-fink-what-gives-me-joy-nov-23-2016-connection
What Gives Me Joy Nov 23 2016 (connection)

Tomorrow is the US Presidential Inauguration.  I am having a hard time believing that Donald Trump is becoming the US President, that he was voted in.  And yet, it is so.  What concerns me most?  The divisive way he sees and talks gives others permission to do the same, to pit group against group, to use anger and hatred as the path to what they desire.

I say to this–I Am A Contrary!

I am a contrary.  Much of the society and material world I live in tries to tell me all is divided, labelled, specified, separate.  It tries to say I am separate from you, from the water I drink, from Raven chuckling in the fir outside my window, from the ground I walk on, from the smooth grey stone I hold in my hand.

Not so.  I see, I know, I feel all life, this world, everything as one whole being, one energy, constantly connected, breathing one breath, all flow.

I am a contrary.  The material world tries to teach me to see only polarities, black and white, either-or.

But I see pattern, illumination, both-and.  I see richness and range.  As a child growing up and as an adult living in an either-or world, I remain knowing I am the stars, the sky, the earth water wind, the grey stone, Raven, the fir tree.  I am you.  I am and we are, both-and.

I am glad I am a contrary.  Because of this, I know all is one.  I get to see the one whole beauty underneath all of the pieces of this divided material world.  I get to see the beauty and the heart living within each person I meet.

I get to see the hearts each of us carries.  I don’t just mean the unique shining heart each of us is.  I mean every one of us is covered with hearts, all sizes and every colour, one pinned onto us by each person who loves us.  We move through life covered, carried, loved, connected by all these hearts.

Continue reading “I Am A Contrary”

Celebrate

Nana and Papa's house, January 1966
Nana and Papa’s house, January 1966

December. It’s snowing on my blog pages. Love it. Bless the person who came up with snow for the blogs.

We had snow here for real, a week ago, and more forecasted for today. No sight of it yet. I’m waiting, impatiently. Snow boots by the door. Coat and snow pants, hat, mittens from my mom, scarf, all at the ready.

I love the snow and December. They fill me up with joy and play. The child in me has free rein to laugh, enjoy, be happy. No purpose, no goal. Be happy and let it grow as big as it wants to be. I swear that brand new snowflakes on my tongue are good for my health. Also snowballs and snow angels.

My faithful iPod is permanently on its Christmas playlist. Four hundred and seventy-seven songs, if you want to know. Twenty-six hours, nine minutes, and twelve seconds. Every year I add new music. This year it is the Eric Byrd Trio’s version of the Charlie Brown Christmas music, and George Winston’s album December. His ‘Minstrels’ song haunts me in its beauty.

I scan the television listings for my favourite Christmas shows. A Charlie Brown Christmas. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the 1966 original cartoon) was on last night. Yay!  A Christmas Carol, the 1951 movie with Alastair Sim. A Christmas Story. A Muppet Family Christmas, the Muppets in their fuzzy joy. My husband groans when I switch the channel, then watches the show anyways.

Gifts I am creating and giving. Cookies and treats to be baked. Love is such a secret ingredient (shhh, don’t tell) it’s not even listed on the recipe. All for sharing.

December. This is the month my heart sings. I know we are days away yet. I say the words anyways. Happy Christmas. Happy Hanukkah. Happy Diwali (last month, in all its light and colour). Happy Kwanzaa. Happy Solstice.  Happy Happy All.

I make these my December gifts. I choose Happiness. Love. Kindness. Play. Laughter. Sharing. Forgiveness. Joy.

I choose Celebrate.

________________________

In this post:

The Eric Byrd Trio, music, A Charlie Brown Christmas, http://ericbyrd.com/videos/charlie-brown-christmas

George Winston, music, December, http://www.georgewinston.com/recordings/december-11/

A Charlie Brown Christmas, animation, 1965, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Charlie_Brown_Christmas

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, animation, 1964, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudolph_the_Red-Nosed_Reindeer_(TV_special)

How the Grinch Stole Christmas, animation, 1966, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dr._Seuss%27_How_the_Grinch_Stole_Christmas!_(TV_special)

A Christmas Carol (aka Scrooge), movie, 1951, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scrooge_(1951_film)

A Christmas Story, 1983, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Christmas_Story

A Muppet Family Christmas, 1987, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Muppet_Family_Christmas

 

Mirroring Love

Coyote Sings to a Broken World - detail
Coyote Sings to a Broken World – detail

This morning I look into the mirror and what do I see?

I see love.  I see big, fat, wonderful, cushiony love.  I see care.  I see kindness.  I see compassion.  I see forgiveness.  Passion.  Joy.  Play.  Love in all its shapes.

I never realized love had so many faces.  I could have guessed.  I know love is Source,  everything, all.

The version of love I have been is not like this.  It’s limited, conditional.  I’ll love you if you’ll love me.  You love me first, and I’ll control the situation and decide if I want to love you back.  If you love me enough or in a specific way (which you have to guess), I’ll love you too.

This is not love.  This is being closed and cautious and afraid of getting hurt.  This is not actually loving you here in front of me, and not loving myself either.

I am discovering that if I love myself, no conditions on it, it is easy to love the other person, you.  When I love myself unconditionally, my love spills over into the space around me.  Yes, the space where you are standing.  And then you feel love, too.

I love love.  It never runs away or runs out.  It’s always here when I open to it.  Constant.  Waiting for me.  I open to love, and it hugs me back fiercely.  So excited, so happy I am here too, and let’s play!  Love as a four-year-old child sharing all in her toy box.

Unconditional love mirrors me.  It shows me the true me.  It makes me the true me, when I stand in love and only love.  Other things—judgment, limits, holding back, hiding, control—cannot root here or live here.  They need something to push against in order to exist, and love gives no resistance.  They try to push against love, assert themselves, and instead they fall through and away.

In the mirror of love, I see you and me as we truly are.  I see all we have to offer.  The best.

Bright shining stars.  This is us.  In love’s mirror.