Last spring I heard a woman named Cynthia Jurs speak. She said a lot of interesting and important things during her talk, but what stood out to me most was the way she spoke of “acting from the subtle” and how important it can be to stop and breathe in the midst of the chaos that seems to punctuate our world more than we want it to. She spoke of focusing on the space that is in between where we are and where we want to go. She said it’s that ‘in between’ space that allows new things to come into being. From that space we can learn to recognize our gifts, and once we’ve recognized them, we can offer those gifts out into our communities, our workplaces, and our families. She reminded us that it is from our gifts – those gifts that are unique to our own being — that we can affect our life situation in the deepest way and contribute to the healing of the world. She reminded us that due to the nature of “in between” space, we all have a different version of what’s true for us, but that we can still support each other despite being on differing paths. Continue reading “The Space Between”
I watched a robin explore one of our crab apple trees yesterday afternoon. He hopped from bare branch to bare branch, stopping now and then to poke at old, dried-up crabapples with his beak. At one point he seemed to look right at me, as if he were making sure I noticed his presence. I wasn’t sure how to respond.
Robins usually don’t come back to this area of Minnesota until at least the end of March, though last year we saw one on February 18th, the same day the seasonal ‘spring melt’ stream ran — unseasonably early. Yesterday was February 16th, so it seems this trend of early melting will continue for another season. The snow is almost gone after a few days of 40 degrees, and today it’s 50. Tomorrow it is projected to be 55, and Sunday, 57. Winter as I remember it just doesn’t seem to happen anymore, and this early warmth doesn’t feel normal.
You might already be aware of the fact that work takes up a lot of time for a large number of people in modern culture.You may even be one of those folks who feels like they spend more time at the office or behind the till or at the wheel or tapping on a keyboard than is ideal for human health and happiness. And it’s also likely that you, or someone you know, are one of those folks who just doesn’t see a realistic way to do things differently right now. Maybe there’s a job change in your future, maybe you’ll move to a yurt in the Andes or maybe you’ll figure out how to finance a simple lifestyle without living the nine to five. But for many of us, there are school loans to pay, a mortgage with which to keep up, kids to care for and cars to upkeep. I’m guessing leaving it all behind to move to a cabin in the woods sounds fabulous to many reading these words….but for a lot of people, it’s just not going to happen in the next week, or month or year. Maybe it will. Maybe tomorrow will bring a shift that will allow our ideal situation to come closer into being. This post isn’t about giving up on trying to live in a way that requires less money, resources or big life changes. But it is a post about what you can do right now to feel just a tad bit more wild in your day to day. Continue reading “5 Ways to Increase the Wildness of Your Workday”
It’s been overcast and rainy for the last six days here in Minnesota. Today I went outside shortly after waking to stand on the dock. I could hear the resident beaver chomping on some old lily pads as he poked around in the reeds, and the robins that are still here, even though it’s December, were chirping in the bare tree branches. A bright green kayak was resting on the neighbor’s dock, now put away for the winter months, and a hawk circled far above my head, piercing the air once with its call. The lake was utterly still, and the reflection of the skeleton trees along the shoreline stared back at me like a challenge to discern what is real and what is an illusion. Continue reading “These Grey Days”
We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of the dream. Wandering by lone sea breakers, and sitting by desolate streams. World losers and world forsakers, for whom the pale moon gleams. Yet we are movers and shakers of the world forever it seems.
Arthur William Edgar O’Shaughnessy
How do you make music? What do you dream of? What invites you to wander, and what invites you to be still? How do you let go of what the world wants you be? How to you reclaim what calls from your soul?
How do you move with the mountains? What makes you return to the forest, or the lake, or the plains, or the sea, time and time again? How do you look at the moon and what does it say to you? How do you shake your reality in a way that invites peace?
Be a music maker, a…
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What would it look like to dance with a mountain? To be so attuned to the natural world that you could two step or swing dance with an ancient pile of rock and earth? To live so fully in your own wild nature that you could communicate with the world in a way that makes the sky weep in understanding and the plains shiver with anticipation of what is possible when life chooses harmony over dissonance? To figure out how to identify the part of ourselves that is akin to rivers and hilltops and soil and trees and holding that as our center point? Continue reading “To Dance With Mountains”
Alan Watts likes to ask his students, when doing career counseling, “What would you do if money were no object?” He hopes to get them thinking about what they really enjoy about life, what pursuits they truly want to devote energy toward, and how they want to spend their days. Because after all, “what we do with our days is what we do with our lives.” (Annie Dillard)
On one hand, it is quite important to ask ourselves what we would do if we didn’t need to earn money. When we do that, we tap into the things that drive us to align our actions with our values, we find meaning in the everyday, and we teach our children to do the same. And a society full of people who are doing what they feel called to do is one that is setting itself up for a foundation of peace and vitality. …
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