Tag Archives: Inspiration

The Spider Inside the Front Door

Old behaviors easily re-emerge as new guises—they are such great actors. What seemed a solution withers into yet another variation on a theme.

So it is with this morning. I could call it a setback or reversal but any qualitative label is just that.

What it feels like–from the gut–is a new life lens, another way to experience being human. With the new lens comes perspective, one which has its own revelations.

What I discover is yet another facet of fear. There seems to be no shortage of its disguises, either, especially its delusion of safety.

Of course, just being alive is a risk, as I am reminded by the spider that lives inside my front door. Of sorts, we are in relationship, as much as either one of us has noticed.

May I remember the spider the next time I give into fear. Her risk is considerable compared to mine.

On this day, I am reminded that what is will be what was.

Be patient and endure while

The wind will calm, the waves subside

Draw back a step and realize

The boundless ocean, the vastness of heaven

(Translated from Chinese)

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

 

The Restless Hours

The hours in-between, when no light separates night from day, when both are morning, when both are one.

These are the restless hours, so suited to illusion. Their magic lies in that they are neither dark nor light.

Just when I believe I see one thing, something else is revealed. The more aware I am, the more the magic reveals.

Is that not the heart of illusion? The unknown shrouded in the midst of the known.

Murky by design, these hours of in-between keep me on the cusp of the believable. Momentarily, the sound of rain becomes a waterfall.

On this day, the light remains gray, the illusion of the waterfall all but gone. I opt for candlelight and a bit of incense as I write by the light of a screen.

I want to make the magic stay, that time when morning is not yet day, when one is not yet the other.

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

 

 

The Last Firefly

There are so many bright, shining moments not celebrated in legend or in memoir. Maybe they are not even recorded as journal entries. In their uniqueness, they fall short of sharing.

Often, I wonder if I let them go a little sooner than I should, like when fireflies first appear.

There is the brilliance of first firefly light, and maybe for a few nights hence, I am at the window for the show. Each firefly’s life is brief, a bright and shining moment.

Why am I not cognizant of each firefly evening so I might glimpse the last night of the last firefly? Is there not equal brilliance then?

This year, I remembered firefly season in its beginning but I did not stay for the last night of the last firefly.

I tell myself there is always next year but surely, bright and shining moments are not limited to any one season, even if firefly moments are.

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

Forever But Not Forever

Monica de la Torre says, “The sky’s changeups are reminders that this will not drag on forever.” I never thought of the sky as an ongoing image of impermanence but, of course, it is. All I need to do is look up.

It’s rather like binge watching The Man in the High Castle or The Handmaid’s Tale. It takes me out of me to other times similar but not the same. Each story is its own ending.

So, forever but not forever.

In this moment, I am awash in autoimmune disease. Why not look to the sky? An in-the-moment reminder that no thing and no moment ever stays keeps me focused not on what swirls inside me but on what whirls above.

It is worth the walk outside just to watch the world in the sky go by.

Forever but not forever.

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

Somewhere Between Two Shores

Every morning, my meditation starts in storm. New winds beckon my sails; mine is the course to set. In the stillness, my sextant sights.

Sometimes. my ship wrecks but imbalance is impermanent. Like the boomerang, balance will have its return.

The self must settle somewhere two shores.

Make not a bond of love;

let it rather be a moving sea

between the shores of your soul.

(Khalil Gibran)

Sustaining the meditative state is a constant shifting of course, ever mindful of each day’s tides. They are never the same.

Every day, I choose whether to rush inland or to remain offshore, anchor dropped in observation.

Wearying but worth it, this life.

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

When the Journey Seems a Jungle

On so many days, the journey daunts. It’s the obstacle. It’s the path. It’s both. You choose the order, if that’s a must for you. Some days I stagger but I also admit to a bit of swagger. Those days cost me more, ultimately.

This day, the journey is loud with “voices I leave behind.” I have miles to go, new voices to know but not all do I let go. A constant companion is Mary Oliver who always seems to know.

The Journey

One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice–

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations,

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do–

determined to save

the only life you could save.

Mary Oliver

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

Is There Really a Choice?

Be impeccable in your word

Don’t take anything personally

Don’t make assumptions

Always do your best.

Don Miguel Ruiz

In yesterday’s post, I made a passing reference to Don Miguel Ruiz’ Four Agreements. Is there ever a time when they are not needed? Has there ever been a time when it was easy to practice them?

In these dark days, we know we are not hearing one another. In any conversation, who will put assumptions aside in favor of thoughtful discourse?

Anyone? It’s hard. Often, it does not work. Why make it a practice?

I focus on word choice, aiming for impeccable. I don’t always reach that level. Still, I remind myself that in equanimity there are no enemies. My heart remains open rather than shut tight. I only need a sliver of light.

What I’m saying sounds far-fetched, perhaps impractical. Yet, the few times that I have stood in mindfulness—trusted it–drama was left without a stage on which to play. I fueled no fires.

It has happened enough to reinforce my practice of the Four Agreements, especially on those days when my skin is too thin, and I react rather than respond.

One mistake need not necessitate another, so I am more thoughtful in my word choice. At the very least, it changes up the pace of the conversation or social media commentary.

My recent blog post on childhood and its innocence sparked a comment full of hate, truly vitriolic. The words were so raw I could not take them personally. Neither, could I decipher the reader’s meaning.

It is the kind of spew I see far too often on social media. It does not deserve a response, ever. That said, such hate has always been part of the human experience. The Internet only makes it more immediate.

Our language returns to us, sometimes unrecognizable. We effect change with our word. Do we have a choice other than to be impeccable?

Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.