A prayer for being brave and open on the journey of life…
Drum sounds rise on the air,
and with them, my heart.
A voice inside the beat says,
I know you are tired,
This is the way.
May you listen to the voice within the beat even when you are tired. When you feel yourself breaking down, may you break open instead. May every experience in life be a door that opens your heart, expands your understanding, and leads you to freedom. If you are weary, may you be aroused by passion and purpose. If you are blameful and bitter, may you be sweetened by hope and humor. If you are frightened, may you be emboldened by a big consciousness far wiser than your fear. If you are lonely, may you find love, may you find friendship. If you are lost, may you understand that we are all lost, and still we are guided—by strange angels and sleeping giants, by our better and kinder natures, by the vibrant voice within the beat. May you follow that voice, for This is the way—the hero’s journey, the life worth living, the reason we are here.
~Elizabeth Lesser, Broken Open: How Difficult Times Can Help Us Grow
Learning how to be kind to ourselves is important. When we look into our own hearts and begin to discover what is confused and what is brilliant, what is bitter and what is sweet, it isn’t just ourselves that we’re discovering. We’re discovering the universe. When we discover the buddha that we are, we realize that everything and everyone is Buddha. We discover that everything is awake, and everyone is awake. Everything and everyone is precious and whole and good. When we regard thoughts and emotions with humor and openness, that’s how we perceive the universe.
I beg your indulgence as I pay tribute to my favorite dancer ever, Gene Kelly. His combination of grace, athleticism, humor and downright joy gave me (still gives me) many hours of pleasure and inspiration. Years ago, when I was filling out a questionnaire at a seminar, one of the questions was “If you could have lunch with anyone in the world, who would it be?” I was still dancing at the time, and Gene Kelly was the first name that popped into my head. Of course, in my fantasy, lunch would have been followed by dancing with the “Marlon Brando of Screen Dance”.
Gene Kelly would have been 100 years old today, and, thanks to the magic of film, his dancing will continue to inspire generations to come. I never tire of watching the title number from Singin’ in the Rain. When it’s over…well, the lyrics say it all: “What a glorious feeling—I’m happy again!”
So…who inspires you? Do you need a little dose of that energy today? If it’s a musician/singer, listen to his/her/their music. If it’s an author, make a cup of coffee and spend some time with his/her words. Take it in, soak it up, let it fill you. Then go out and inspire someone else with your own brand of awesomeness. :)
Tonight I learned that a friend of mine passed away last week. We did theatre together a million years ago and probably hadn’t seen each other in a couple of decades, but I had reconnected with him, as I had with many of my old theatre friends, through Facebook. I enjoyed reading his posts, including one from a few weeks ago, the clip of Dixie Carter as Julia Sugarbaker on Designing Women delivering “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia” speech.
Bob had an amazing voice and a wicked sense of humor, but what comes to me as I think back is his kindness. Continue reading
non sequitur comic strip by wiley miller
(Mutts comic strip by Patrick McDonnell)
I have a confession to make. When I used to get the newspaper, I’d always read the comics first. Some days that was the only thing I’d read. Mutts was one of my favorites, right up there with Calvin & Hobbes, but with its own brand of furry/fuzzy charm. This is one that I cut out ages ago and stuck on my refrigerator, where it lived for many years, until it got packed in a box with all the other “fridge art” when I moved. I found it and a couple of others a while back and have been meaning to scan and share them. Tonight seemed to be as good a time as any to start….
Calvin & Hobbes ~Bill Watterson