What We Deserve…

I love this post – the art – actually, the whole blog here at Walking Spirals. Gary Rosenberg is incredibly creative and generous with that creativity [you may have noticed ‘credit – grosenberg’ accompanying artwork on my own posts from time to time ]. So I’m trying a first, in keeping with trying something new with the new year. I’m reblogging the entire post with gratitude for the sentiment and the ability to share it with my own readers.

Waking Spirals

 

“We deserve all the good things that happen to us. Don’t feel guilty. Accept the blessings”
— Paulo Coelho

 

When I first read the above quote, I was struck by how many different levels there can be in a simple eloquent statement. On the one hand I asked myself, is he saying that we deserve and are deserving of whatever comes to us either good or bad? Does that mean that people who suffer deserve their suffering? It occurred to me that that is a stretch for Mr. Coelho does not talk about the bad things but the good.
I have know several people who were so convinced that all they deserved was hardship and pain that when their lives actually improved, they sabotaged them because they did not feel they deserved it. In many cases, the people who did this were kids which made it even rougher…

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we must begin to listen

graphic from Piercy poem

Once again, I need to lift Parker Palmer’s Facebook post and plant it here. Not only does he state beautifully what I might try to re-state less deftly. He uses one of my all-time favorite poems by Marge Piercy to illustrate his point. In the interest of sharing the already-invented and of honoring my “Con Fem Friday” post theme, here is an excerpt from Parker; and the full text of Marge’s poem.

He says: “If we value things like friendship, family, community, education, workplaces that work, and democracy, there’s a minimum requirement. We must learn to talk with each other, even when we disagree. Not ‘at’ each other, or even ‘to’ each other; but WITH each other!”

Parker goes on – but I want to share lines from Marge’s poem that speak strongly to me – and hopefully to you, as well:

We must sit down …

Perhaps we should sit in the dark.
In the dark . . .
only the words
would say what they say…

into the dark, perhaps we could begin
to begin to listen…

The men must bother to listen.
The women must learn to say, I think this is so.
The men must learn to stop dancing solos on the ceiling…

Read the entire poem here:  COUNCILS – Marge Piercy

And thank you for listening!

Thoughts in the Presence of Fear | Wendell Berry | Orion Magazine

One of the most thoughtful writers of our time offers a compelling essay. In one of the most compelling magazines out there. Written in 2001. So critical today.

We citizens of the industrial countries must continue the labor of self-criticism and self-correction. We must recognize our mistakes…
This is why the substitution of rhetoric for thought, always a temptation in a national crisis, must be resisted by officials and citizens alike…
The aim and result of war necessarily is not peace but victory, and any victory won by violence necessarily justifies the violence that won it and leads to further violence…
What leads to peace is not violence but peaceableness, which is not passivity, but an alert, informed, practiced, and active state of being… The key to peaceableness is continuous practice…

Read on, contemplate, and join in the conversation. How do you fare in the face of fear?  Why are we so reluctant to practice peace? Where do you stand on these issues?

Thoughts in the Presence of Fear | Wendell Berry | Orion Magazine.

resistance to blossoming

Quote

“How strange that the nature of life is change, yet the nature of human beings is to resist change.

And how ironic that the difficult times we fear might ruin us are the very ones that can break us open

and help us blossom into who we were meant to be.”

– Elizabeth Lesser

blooming despite adversity

source unknown