quote du jour ~gaiman

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art—write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.

~Neil Gaiman

 

more threads

I finally planted the pansies in the little beds by the front walk a few days before Christmas. Planting the pansies involved raking leaves out of the beds, and, as always, my thoughts turned to my dad as I raked. It’s a connection that I’ve taken for granted over the years. In fact, I didn’t even give it much thought until it prompted a blog post about my dad, the very first post on this blog.

I believe there are threads that connect us all and that these connections are never lost. We may think they’re gone because someone dies or leaves us in some other way, but we carry those people with us every day. They become and remain a part of who we are.

A while back, I came across a quote by Madeleine L’Engle (author of A Wrinkle in Time, A Circle of Quiet, and many other wonderful books):

The great thing about getting older is that you don’t lose all the other ages you’ve been.

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shine your light

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Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
~Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the holidays we celebrate at this time of year—Winter Solstice, Hanukkah, Christmas—all have light as a central theme. With the Solstice (December 21st in the Northern Hemisphere), the ancients celebrated the return of the light. From that day on, the dark winter days would gradually lengthen, bringing spring to the earth once again. Hannukkah celebrates an event in Jewish history during which the lamp oil that was only supposed to last for one day burned instead for eight days. Christmas celebrates the birth of Christ, the “Light of the World.” They’re all about hope, about the light dispelling the darkness.

I think the message these holidays can bring us is that, even in the darkness, we need to remember the light. Especially in times of darkness, we need to remember that there is light. For every act of hatred, there is an act of lovingkindness. For every tortured, angry, dark soul, there is another soul shining his or her light on the world. And we need to remember, in the midst of the darkness, that we can choose the light.

Blessings to all of you out there who take the time to read this blog. I like to think of you as pinpoints of light scattered across the globe—in 150 countries, from Azerbaijan to Zimbabwe. The image comforts me and warms my heart.

So the next time you’re tempted to think, “I’m only one person. What can I do?”…remember that your light joined with the light of all the others like you (and there are others like you) can set the world ablaze with light.

In this season of celebrating the triumph of light over darkness, please, shine your light, whatever that means to you. It doesn’t need to be a grand gesture. Just listen to your heart. You’ll know.

As I like to say, “Merry Happy!” Wherever you are, I wish you a beautiful, peaceful, light-filled season and send my light across the miles to join with yours.

~Viki/pathwriter

 

quote du jour ~the dalai lama – we can let…

We can let the circumstances of our lives harden us so that we become increasingly resentful and afraid, or we can let them soften us and make us kinder. You always have the choice.

~The Dalai Lama

trust and the threads of time, part 2

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about the first of two things that happened recently, both of which caused me to stop and think about the journey I’m on. Here’s the second one….

The same weekend I bought the rug (maybe even the same day), I walked out of my house to run errands and noticed that one of the terra cotta pots lining my steps and walkway was broken. All of my pots were currently “in transition”—the summer annuals pulled out, the pansies yet to go in—so all of them were sitting there with nothing but dirt in them, the four-packs of pansies waiting nearby.

The pot in question had clearly been knocked over and the potting soil strewn across the walk. I could see where someone had scraped as much of the dirt as possible back into the pot, leaving a thin layer of soil dusting the walk, and had then propped the broken pieces against the sides in an effort to hold the dirt in the now-destroyed pot.

I didn’t know what had happened, but my first guess was that a neighbor’s dog had seen one of my cats on the porch and taken off after it, knocking over the pot in the process. I turned back to the door and mailbox to see if there was a note of explanation/apology; there was none. I began to feel upset, indignant that the person/dog owner involved in the incident would just shove the dirt back in the pot, prop it up as though nothing had happened, and leave no note of apology for the broken pot—or knock on my door to explain/apologize. I leapt to judgment, thinking, How inconsiderate and irresponsible! Continue reading