It may be dumb, but it still works just fine!
Every time folks look at my cell phone, they have a hard time suppressing the expression on their faces that says, ‘How do you get that antique to work, anyway?‘ When I patiently remind my students to email me the night before group to inform me of the next day’s absence – because I have neither internet at the writing studio, nor smart phone – they do not seem to register my meaning. Even last week, when I was at the Verizon store purchasing a smart phone for my daughter, she, the salesman and my husband tried their best to persuade me to buy one for myself. I simply could not figure out a reason to do so.
OK, maybe I am the dinosaur here. Continue reading
courtesy Deborah Koff-Chapin
I peer into the depths to see myself
slowly waken, pulse slowed by cold
as my hands hold my heart suspended
for the moments of winter to pass into warmth
and light, to bring me fully out of the womb-cave of darkness, reflecting
back to me the lessons learned
from winter visions that long to merge
with the light springing into life
“I want to stay in love when fear drives me to hate and judgement. I want to practice gratitude and cultivate joy in the darkness. That doesn’t mean that I can’t be afraid or sad or vulnerable, it simply means that reacting to tragedy by living in fear doesn’t create empathy, it breeds more fear.” Brene Brown, inspired by Martin Luther King
This practice of gratitude is a daily intention, a prayer for living, hopefully even a way of life. There is much to be grateful for and many ways to find it, from a simple meditation to a five-minute entry in a Gratitude Journal before going to sleep at night. When I first tried this practice, it felt, frankly, a bit awkward and even forced. I found myself penning gratitude for the same things over and over.
While this is great – to appreciate what I have in my life – it quickly became apparent that there was so much more I could reflect upon. And with each reflection, the gratitude went deeper and wider, until it spread to an ongoing perception of abundance in even the smallest of events, moments, observations. When filled with gratitude, it is hard to retreat in fear. Somehow, it becomes easier to carry fear without becoming fear-filled. Might this then be the foundation of empathy?
Try it. Perhaps you will find yourself moved from abundance to empathy, letting fear take a back seat to your day. And then, please share your gratitude moment(s) here.