Updated: Jul 7
“Who serves best doesn’t always understand.” Czesław Miłosz*
We are not bigger than hope. I've experienced such a whirlwind, a wildfire of emotions over this past weekend. At a time when we in the United States focus on family, good food, friends, celebrations of what our country means to us, a shock came for one of my friends, one of my dear teachers, whose teenaged grandson experienced a terrible accident and whose life is now hanging in the balance. This is the kind of thing we know can happen, yet stops us cold, especially when it hits close to home and to a child. If you are reading this, my hope is that you will say a few prayers and send some energy of courage, comfort, strength (whatever seems appropriate to you) on behalf of Sarah Cherry, her son, Will and his wife, Tricia- their family, and especially the young man, William, who is now in the delicate hands of uncertainty. There is a ray of light- over the last day, for those who have become cynical of "thoughts and prayers", I have to say that as her family reports with gratitude and amazement, even in their sorrow and worry, they have felt the power of unity from members of their community and even from people they don't personally know as they band together in prayer, representing several faiths, cultures, and countries. We are not bigger than hope; especially at those times when events are out of our direct control, are not about us, or our own, or burdens we would like to take from the shoulders of others but don't think we can do enough to help- hope is not too small a thing to offer. So many times it is all we have to give, but when it becomes a unified network, it can bring about a powerful working for all that is Good. It makes an opening for the highest possible outcome.
I don't have a lot else to say this week. I came across an article this morning that inspired me in the midst of all this. I hope it will be useful in some way.
Update on William- unfortunately, he was not able to recover from catastrophic injuries and has passed on to his next journey. My hope is that you will keep his family close at heart in your prayers as they navigate this pain of their devastating loss. There was a write up in our local paper about his passing that shows what a light in this world he truly was- a remarkable young man whose light shined openly for everyone around him and I am sure, shines even more so in spirit: Will Cherry/ Tennessean
Excerpts from this "must read" article (linked),
"What to do When You Don't Know What's Next", by Dawa Tarchin Phillips,
"The Eight Principles":
8. Stand on Truth: “Here I am referring to what we often call timeless truths- what we could describe as the golden mountains…Golden mountains don’t need you to carry them. They are there for everyone to see in plain sight.”
This truth does not give itself over to endless debate. It just is. Every other principle that compels us to defend it as if it is the only truth is just an extension of ego.
7. Invest Trust: “Rather than waiting for the world to become safer, or waiting for other people to become more predictable, you walk forward with trust because it is the right thing for you and the world. And because it’s good for you: trust makes you open, calm, relatable, peaceful, and happy. Those qualities will inspire someone else to invest more trust as well.”
The right time is always now, no matter what. "Persistently ill, doesn't die". This statement comes from the I Ching (I'll post a reference when I come across it, I'm trying to just allow the message to come through right now) One translation of this line that made me pause- it means, even when you are sick, pray anyway.
6. Dance in the fire: “We’re talking about awareness of a mind that is constantly liberating emotions and experiences. In the midst of it all you can realize that you’re actually not trapped…All it takes is a shift in your thoughts, a shift in your attitude, a shift in your focus, and your experience changes. You’re free to make that shift at any time.”
As you are ready to release emotional states and outdated beliefs, let them go. We never know the full story of why people do or think what they do and we are not prisoners of our own thought forms or those of others.
5. Fear No One: “Get to know yourself and start to consider the possibility of true equality. Equality doesn’t mean that you don’t stand out for how beautiful or how smart you are, or for all the gifts and talents you possess. Equality means that everybody else has those qualities too. Equality is about giving up the constant desire to lift yourself above others so that you appear superior to them. Awaking is about lifting everybody up together with you.”
You and everyone you know or ever have known are immeasurably beautiful.
4. Own Your Shit: “Cut through the narcissism, the hypocrisy, and the self-indulgence; cut through the mental noise and confused storylines in your own head that amplify ongoing drama in your life and in the world, and finally show up wherever you are needed, or wherever you find yourself, fully present.”
Change the story of your drama by showing up mindfully, with awareness that is clear and warmhearted. And we are all sometimes full of shit. Call it out.
3. Love With Abandon: “To Love with abandon is about kindness and compassion, but it’s also about gratitude.”
Think of someone who has done something totally kind and helpful for you and savor that experience. Feel it fully and completely; allow yourself to feel moved.
2. Break The Norm: “What I mean here is to break your norm. Break with your own conditioning. Breath through the fixation and the tightness binding your opinions, your righteousness, your judgments, and your incessant blind criticism.”
Find a belief that doesn't jive with you right now. Examine it for veracity; if it no longer has any, release or change the habit of it.
1. Serve the Light: “What is the light?” You are the light…to serve the light means to show up…as your best and highest self, and to show up for others in your life as well.”
To get beyond your (false) self, you have to see it for what it is.
That is all I have for now. Please have your best week possible, respect your struggles, and embrace your joy and your messy corners!
Yijing project for the week of July 4th: Theme: Liberation/ Relief
40: Jie/ Relief, or, Liberation. Changing line 2, transforms to 16: Yu/ Delight
As these readings have been all year-always- totally appropriate for those of us in the United States, kicking off the week with Independence Day Celebrations. More of an analysis may be forthcoming- with all the emotions flowing right now, I don't want to exhaust myself. Or, right now, maybe I am lazy.
New Month, other new items (these are also in varying degrees of finished):
Animal Focus- Cheetah/ Leopard
Going nearer to a new moon (on Friday, 7-9-21) this animal reminds us to reclaim our own power. Perfect and swift timing.
Zibu Angelic Script - "Ana"- Prosperity
To have prosperity, connect to your own sense of it; finding inner riches helps one to feel content with what is happening now and trusting yourself enough to know that whatever may come, you can prevail- you are sufficient. Savor the moments when you feel this so you can remember this feeling to help you through the times (and there will be plenty) when you don't.
* from the poem, "Love":
"Love means to learn to look at yourself
The way one looks at distant things
For you are only one thing among many.
And whoever sees that way heals his heart,
Without knowing it, from various ills.
A bird and a tree say to him: Friend.
Then he wants to use himself and things
So that they stand in the glow of ripeness.
It doesn’t matter whether he knows what he serves:
Who serves best doesn’t always understa