quote du jour ~richo

In the hero stories, the call to go on a journey takes the form of a loss, an error, a wound, an unexplainable longing, or a sense of a mission. When any of these happens to us, we are being summoned to make a transition. It will always mean leaving something behind…The paradox here is that loss is a path to gain.

~David Richo, How to Be an Adult: A Handbook for Psychological and Spiritual Integration

excerpt du jour ~susanka

Throughout the centuries, people have posed the questions “What am I doing here?” and “What is the meaning of life?” These are, of course, big and almost impossibly profound questions that usually lead us nowhere. But the older we get, the more urgent they seem to become.

There’s a wonderful teaching by Jelaluddin Rumi, the thirteenth century Sufi poet, which can help us see what we’re missing:

There is one thing in this world you must never forget to do. Human being come into this world to do particular work. That work is their purpose, and each is specific to the person. If you forget everything else and not this, there’s nothing to worry about. If you remember everything else and forget your true work, then you will have done nothing with your life.

Rumi goes on to explain that the raw material we are given through birth is an incredibly precious material that can be formed into anything at all. “It’s a golden bowl,” he says, “which is being used to cook turnips, when one filing from the bowl could buy a hundred suitable pots.” We’re using what we’ve been given for a far lesser function than its true capacity. We think we are being good, productive citizens because we are cooking up a storm in our bowl, but we’re not seeing what the bowl really is and what food that bowl could provide us if we knew how to look at it differently.

So there is one thing in the world, according to Rumi’s teaching, that must not be forgotten. Continue reading

yes, but…

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It’s funny. You go through your life (intuitive person that you are) following your inner guidance, listening to that still, small voice…until. Until the still, small voice tells you something you don’t want to hear, something that, for whatever reason, scares the hell out of you.

That’s when all that allowing yourself to be led, all that going with the flow, all that surrendering to the call flies right out the window. Suddenly, you’re having a knock-down, drag-out fight with your inner guidance, digging in your heels and saying, “Yes, but…” or even “Hell, no!” Well, that was me about six months ago.

Except for a few stories I wrote in my junior high language arts classes, all the writing I’ve ever done has been non-fiction: journalism (mostly dance reviews and features, a few gardening articles), marketing copy, press releases, business and fundraising letters, grant-writing, blog posts, etc. etc. However, last fall, I started a freelance writing job that involved writing short articles for children, including short fiction pieces. I was surprised to find that not only were the fiction pieces easier to write than I’d expected, but I also enjoyed writing them, and the client seemed to really like my stories.

Great, right? It’s always nice when you enjoy your day job.

Then, sometime around the beginning of March, I started getting this (for lack of a better term) “nudge” from my inner guidance. The nudge was saying, in so many words, “You need to be writing fiction.”

Continue reading

march 31, 1992

Keep me from me!

Please–
I do not want to hear
the cries of my heart,
the wails of despair,
the longing for communion,
the echoes of loneliness.

Remove me,
stand me away
from this self,
this seeker
who knows not
that for which she searches
but is compelled
to continue the quest.

Here–
in isolation,
in ignorance,
I am at ease.
I am content.
I exist.
I die.

pathwriter’s note: I found this and several other poems I’d written in a notebook a while back. I don’t remember what it was that prompted the writing of it all those years ago, but it expresses so well the part of me in the present that has, at times, wanted to ditch the as-yet-unidentified “calling” I’ve felt these last few years, to turn away from that which has drawn me repeatedly into unknown territories, both internal and external.  However, I know (as I evidently knew then, too) that if I turn my back on the part of me that is the seeker, I will be turning my back on the deepest, truest part of me, and if I do this, it is my soul that will die.

quote du jour ~kubler-ross -when you spend your life…

When you spend your life doing what you love to do, you are nourishing your Soul. It matters not what you do, only that you love whatever you happen to do. Some of the happiest people I’ve known have been nannies, gardeners, and housekeepers. They put their hearts into their work, and they used the work itself as a vehicle to nourish their Souls. I’ve known other people with more prestigious professions who absolutely hated their jobs. What good is it to be a doctor or a professional if you do not genuinely love what you do? Working in a job you do not love does nothing to nourish your Soul.

~Elizabeth Kübler-Ross, “Soul Gifts in Disguise” in Handbook for the Soul

quote du jour ~o’connell

I’ve always believed in the idea that each of us has a particular place in the universe where we belong, and that if we find it, everything will fall into place and we will flourish.

~Patrick O’Connell

quote du jour ~thurman – there is something…

There is something in every one of you that waits and listens for the sound of the genuine in yourself. It is the only true guide you will ever have. And if you cannot hear it, you will all of your life spend your days on the ends of strings that somebody else pulls.

~Howard Thurman

the heart’s blossom ~mark nepo

                      Courage is the heart’s blossom.

All courage is threshold crossing. Often there is a choice: to enter the burning building or not, to speak the truth or not, to stand before oneself without illusion or not. But there is another sort of courage we are talking about here—the kind when afterward, the courageous are puzzled to be singled out as brave. They often say, I had no choice. I had to run in that building for that child. Or I had to quit my job or I would have died.

Despite all consequences, there is an inevitable honoring of what is true, and at this deep level of inner voice, it is not a summoning of will, but a following of true knowing. Continue reading

quote du jour ~levoy – callings…

…callings aren’t fragile, and they don’t give up. You may give up. You may throw up your hands in disgust and despair, but the search party will not retire.

~Gregg Levoy, Callings: Finding and Following an Authentic Life

don’t go back to sleep

The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you
Don’t go back to sleep
You must ask for what you really want
Don’t go back to sleep
People are going back and forth across the doorsill where the two worlds touch
The door is round and open
Don’t go back to sleep

~Rumi

I was surprised to realize that I hadn’t posted this verse before, because it’s one of my favorites. It’s been up on my bedroom wall for so long that I just assumed it had already had its day as a quote du jour.

It’s so easy to go back to sleep…to ignore the longing for Continue reading