Feel It All

“The opposite of love is not hate,
it’s indifference.”
~Elie Wiesel

It can be difficult to follow the current political news, much less act on it. So much of what is happening now is crazy and scary. I try to hold this quote from Elie Wiesel (above) close to my heart.

Sometimes I have powerful negative feelings bubble up when I see what’s happening in America today. I feel deep fear and anger and even hate at times. That’s ok. Those too are normal human emotions. It’s all spiritual grist for the mill – even the crazy ugly stuff. 

Denying or stuffing my negative reactions to the news doesn’t help anyone. Denial ties me up in knots. I lose my ability to act. But if I can allow myself the space to feel whatever I’m feeling about the chaos around me, no matter how uncomfortable, I come out the other side stronger and clearer and more capable of acting from a space of love and compassion.

Lose Judgment

Pema Chodron
Pema Chodron

An idea to ponder today from one of my favorite authors and spiritual teachers…

“I can’t overestimate the importance of accepting ourselves
exactly as we are right now, not as we wish we were, or think we ought to be.
By cultivating nonjudgmental openness to ourselves and to whatever arises,
to our surprise and delight we will find ourselves genuinely welcoming
the never-pin-downable quality of life, experiencing it as a friend, a teacher,
and a support, and no longer as an enemy.”

~Pema Chodron in her book, Living Beautifully


Stop judging and critiquing. Accept what is. 

In those moments when I can truly accept myself, I receive my own beauty and worth – to myself and to the world. Self-acceptance allows me to relax and open up to the magic of this moment.


akˈsept/ verb

  1. consent to receive (a thing offered).

  2. believe or come to recognize (an opinion, explanation, etc.) as valid or correct.

Finding Ground in Chaotic Times


Each week I receive Heart Advice emails from Pema Chodron. Pema is wise, humble and quite funny in a dry Buddhist kind of way.  She is one of my all-time favorite spiritual teachers.  This week’s Heart Advice is so good that I wanted to share it with all of you.

Sometimes the most profound advice is quite simple:


“First, come into the present. Flash on what’s happening with you right now.
Be fully aware of your body, its energetic quality.
Be aware of your thoughts and emotions. 

Next, feel your heart, literally placing your hand on your chest if you find that helpful.
This is a way of accepting yourself just as you are in that moment,
a way of saying, “This is my experience right now, and it’s okay.” 

Then go into the next moment without any agenda.”

~Pema Chodron
Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change

Smoke and Stone

Smoke and Stone
Smoke and Stone

I sit

breathing out my worry

and my wonder

as I silently ask the Goddess

what exactly is compassion?

and can I offer it to myself?

I sit

breathing out my fear

am I brave enough

to love

like a Boddhisattva

without reason, without end?

I sit

watching the Goddess

smoke dances, we sit

suddenly, the stone of me cracks

there is nowhere to hide

I am love.

Soul Bloom

Summer Bloom

Flow with the Energies of your Soul
Be True to You
Allow Yourself to Bloom

☾ ☽

“There’s no stopping the soul that radiates out and around us,
any more than one can stop the sweet perfume of a rose.
You could, of course, hold your nose.
But the rose will continue to exude its rich fragrance”

 ~Tom Cowan, Celtic Shaman

Seeds of Possibility

Seed Tree

I take an early morning walk; it is already promising to be a hot day. But here by the St. Vrain river, it is still cool and juicy and green.  The dog and I wander down the river trail  and I begin to see seeds everywhere… Seeds dangle above me, below me, in front of me. Seeds on grass stalks, trees ripe with seed, every weed flowering and throwing off seeds in the wind.  Every plant seems to be going to seed right before my eyes.

Seeds symbolize potential for me; each seed is a tiny, little pocket of possibility. From a biological perspective, seeds actually hold the blueprint for all of creation on planet earth. EVERY bit of life here starts with seed; seeds are the source of all the plants in the ocean and on land. And every animal on earth, including you and me, began from a tiny fertilized ovum seed.

After decades of gardening, I am still amazed each time I witness life forming from a seed; I plant tiny black seeds the size of pepper grains in my garden, and within weeks, tiny seedlings sprout and transform into big heads of yummy green lettuce. Nature orchestrates a miraculous transformation from seed potential to juicy plant reality in just a few short weeks.

“You couldn’t hardly believe there was life in them tiny things,
some no bigger than grains of dust, let alone colour and scent,
if you hadn’t seen the miracle, could you?”  
~L.M. Montgomery, Anne’s House of Dreams

One tiny plant seed, combined with a little water and sunlight, will grow into a cottonwood tree or a clump of grass. Or maybe even an entire meadow full of blooms.  The creative possibilities from one seed are staggering. Every single little seed holds magical possibilities. And Mother Nature is obviously a gifted magician.

I walk by the river, spying seeds at every turn.  It is as though nature is teasing and taunting me with the abundant possibilities of life.  The sight of seeds dangling from every tree, bush and grass stalk is so outrageously over the top that I cannot help but smile at all this abundance. And it is just the message I need today; I’ve been working on a book for months, struggling to create a structure that will hold the ideas that want to burst forth onto paper. But this particular piece of writing is as slippery and elusive as an eel, slithering away each time I think I’ve finally got it pinned down.

I have been trying to grab this elusive book and hold it still so I can define it, but it defies all my efforts at solid definition. This particular book creation seems to thrive on chaos and confusion.  And the final shape of this book is not remotely in sight yet.  I find that I am a bit fearful of not having any sense of where this book and I are going to end up. Like most writers and artists, I love to pretend that I am in control of my creative process – even when I know in my heart that I’m not!  When I am honest with myself, I admit that my husband’s view of my writing being some type of mysterious, organic secretion process is actually more accurate!

But here, on the river path this morning, I look around and see how Nature is absolutely pouring her creative juices into a future that can’t yet be seen. Mother Nature doesn’t sit and whine about not being able to predict the final shape of her creative efforts; she doesn’t refuse to proceed with seed production until the future is defined and absolutely known.  Mother Nature just creates. And keeps creating. I believe she creates just for the sheer joy of creating.

I look around at all of Mother Nature’s creations and I remember that creativity is more about allowing than controlling. My attempts at control usually end up killing my creative flow. Creativity LOVES freedom and unconfined spaces. And my own writing moves into a magical space when I stop worrying about the final outcome, and just open up and allow the flow of ideas, the flow of words to come out in whatever form they choose to take today.  The final product will take care of itself if I can relax and breathe, and just follow today’s flow. Relax and allow the words to flow without trying to clamp down and judge them or filter them or manipulate them.

I breathe in the sights and scents of Mother Nature’s creative abundance. I breathe and feel myself relax. Like every seed on my path today, this elusive book knows what it wants to become, even if it won’t reveal itself to me yet.  My job is to allow it to flow out into the light of day and to water it with my loving attention.

I wonder if I can relax and enjoy watching this book shift and grow from week to week? Can I embrace this little shape-shifter instead of fighting its process?  I wonder if I can learn to revel in all the possibilities that this seed of a book contains?

“It is a denial of the divinity within us
to doubt our potential and our possibilities.”  

Seed Tree II