Saturday, September 17, 2016
A few days after arriving in MD from AZ I went to a recovery meeting and began connecting and making friends. In the two months since then I have gone to several meetings a week and begun several friendships. I have done similarly with Friend’s (Quaker) meetings, though only twice a week. The connections are vital to my approach to life. That is when I feel the power of love most clearly. I have also begun connecting with the land, plants and spirits in this area. I am still new to that type of connecting so it is a bit tentative, but it seems equally vital to me.
Friday, September 16, 2016
I read my journal and also recall that yesterday I felt inadequate and that I could not do the task at hand. Today I feel like "I got this". The difference is a couple of days of not doing anything challenging and a lot of self-care. Two points come to mind. The first is that feelings are not facts, they are temporary and they pass. The second lesson I need to be aware of is the importance of being gentle with myself. In this case I took it easy for a couple of days, even if that did not seem reasonable.
Thursday, September 15, 2016
Today I felt inadequate to the challenge at hand. I was also aware of being in the seeming (though not real!) chaos of a new environment. I commented to Maria that I just had to become "all I could be". Some of the words of Marianne Williamson, in The Gift Of Change: Spiritual Guidance for Living Your Best Life come to mind "It is time to die to who we used to be and to become instead who we are capable of being. That is the gift that awaits us now: the chance to become who we really are. And that is the miracle: the gift of change". Another of her comments ring true to me right now "If you can rise above the fear in your life and live the love within you, and if I can rise above my fear and live the love in me-----if that drama is reenacted enough times by enough of the world’s people-----then we will pierce the cosmic darkness and tip the world in the direction of light." Very simple - just not easy so I spent a good part of the day making spaghetti sauce and taking it easy.
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
I have a desire to reach out to the people I contact daily and offer them a more fulfilling life through spirituality and connection in general - or am I just being a bit arrogant. Other people being receptive to my message depends on them believing that something is missing from their lives - which many (perhaps most!) people do not believe. The difference between us is shown nicely by the driving attitudes I spoke of a few days ago. My tendency is to drive at a moderate speed, be present, be relaxed and connect. While their approach is to get where they are going, as quickly as possible. They see me as an impediment and in need of speeding up. My best approach is to respect where they are coming from, get out of the way as much as possible, and leave them alone as long as their life is working for them.
Tuesday, September 13, 2016
On our way traveling across the country we stopped for the night at a camping area in Oklahoma. As is my practice, I got up to pray, meditate and contemplate in the middle of the night and there in the glow of my headlamp, right in front of our tent an orb-web spider was making her web. She worked very hard, made a beautiful web and caught a few insects by morning. She did not become famous and the only people who knew of and appreciated her labors were my wife and myself. I was emotionally and spiritually impacted by the sight, taking it to be symbolic of the work I was about to begin in Maryland. Today I was reminded of this experience and my role here by a beautiful orb-web and spider in the backyard, glowing because of the sunlight(?) on it. The strange part was that it was not there when I tried to show it to Maria a few minutes later. Understanding is not required.
Monday, September 12, 2016
In my quest to be of service to the people in this area I am trying to understand them. Most of them, though certainly not all, are very immersed in worldly things, anxious and angry, more so in MD than they were in Flagstaff. This attitude is quite apparent when driving. I generally drive at two to three miles per hour above the speed limit. I usually gather a line of cars behind me that want to go faster and, given an opportunity, the drivers let me know of their displeasure and tell me I should speed up. When this happens I have a very strong urge to speed up and join them so I set my cruise control to my standard two to three miles per hour above the speed limit, relax and be present.
Sunday, September 11, 2016
I have been reading, studying and contemplating modern physics and considering how to reconcile it with the spiritual realities and ideas that I am familiar with. Sean Carroll points out that "In modern parlance, Laplace was pointing out that the universe is something like a computer. You enter an input (the state of the universe right now), it does its calculation (the laws of physics) and it gives you an output (the state of the universe one moment later)." Then on the other hand he comments that "There is much we don’t know about how the world works". It’s clear that the core theory of physics explains the vast majority of what happens in this world, but not everything, the force and power of love comes to mind, along with various phenomena.