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On Saturday I went to Mystic CT and a new exhibit was 1938 Fire Boat from NYC (at the Mystic seaside museum . It was a 40 min tour. Well the fire boat was there during 9/11 and to hear the story of the little boat and how it helped save lives even those who jumped in the harbor to try to escape the fires is one of life’s mysteries. I am forever touched by so many stories of heroism. This tour touched my heart for sure!!
Kayaking in a vast lake with birds and ducks. Being alone in such a beautiful place and watching two eagles over head.
Over a week ago, at my nephew’s funeral, a grandmother and family brought their 3 month old precious child. In the stilled silence of the vigil room the little one started fusing and crying. Grandma stood in an aisle rocking her trying to provide comfort. I was nearby, after greeting the Elder with child and the blushing young mother in the pew, I audibly said “ Thank You for bringing this little one! We need to remember Life goes on! What a gift she brings us all!” Her tears broke our strained quiet and many started visiting. Mystery—she gave voice to our communal pain, of a young life lost to suicide.
I’ve spent the last three days working
near the roughest part of San Francisco.
Observing the human misery that is on
full display. As a chauffeur, I was working
with the fortunate and the wealthy. The
disparity is disturbing. The un awareness on
both ends is astonishing. It seems as humans,
we will do anything to not be in this present
moment. Don’t get me wrong, San Francisco is
a beautiful city with so much good stuff
going on, but it leaves me in a state of
confusion. I know this isn’t the kind of
“mystery” that was being referred to, but
Right now, this is where my head is at.
Thank you, Charlie, for your comments on the misery of the unhoused and uncared for people. Alamosa is the largest town in the San Luis Valley (about 10,000 residents) and the unfortunate are on many street corners. There is an outreach society named La Puente (the bridge) and a site for camps is also ongoing. My middle brother was homeless and in bad straights in the early nineties. He has come a long way with help and compassion.
I don’t know Charlie, I feel it is one of the great mysteries of life, and perhaps even more so given the age in which we live. Seeing it however, is the first step along the path to a solution.
What a powerful comment Charlie! Thank you for sharing what so many of us doing community work see and feel most of the time. Hard to see the mistery of dispair and feel at times paralized by inaction. Where to begin?! I like your comment of “It seems as humans, we will do anything to not be in this present moment”. Thank you for your post!
interesting observation. Thanks.
Life’s mystery is whatever we find mysterious, isn’t it? You noticing the misery amidst the lavish displays matters for how you live in and think about the world. How one person can notice this and another sail right on by is another (painful) mystery.
This morning my husband had to leave to go to another property that we own…near our cabin. The road is being encrouched by shrubs of all kinds…all invasive to the area. A neighbor found a group of men who were willing to take on this chore….they are from Guatamala…and how thankful I am that they have agreed to do the work. I am alone in the house (well, of course- kept company by my dog, Clancy- who is sound asleep and the cats Finn and Nora …also keeping watch behind closed eyes!! Peter and I have been talking about perhaps moving…as I have said in the past we live in a very rural area….We are basically alone….We have to drive 40 minutes for groceries, etc. No arts, music or Community type programs. Sometimes it is very loney. But the thought of leaving where we live is daunting..Peter cut all the trees and sawed all the wood for our home…Alot of blood, sweat and tears….and when I first came here …I thought I was in heaven. A place such as this …I had always dreamed of. But then now 20 years later…I am older and thinking how alone we are…no friends or family around. However; this morning a fine misty rain was falling. I went out on our deck and looked into the woods…and watched and listened to the water flowing in our little stream that flows through our property…at that moment…hearing the hushed songs of the birds and the quiet abounding…I knew this was where we need to be for as long as we can be. If we leave here…we will never get this back…we may have stores within walking distance, and a friendly face to say hello to…but our solitude and quiet and our love of our land will be gone. This was my awakening…and working towards the next step. Wishing you all a day filled with happiness…thank you for being here.
Dear Nannette, I must say that I dread the day I may have to move into town. Baxter Black wrote a short story of an old ranch hand that had to move to town due to his age and health. If I recall correctly that move was what did him in. As Niel Young sings “It’s better to burnout than fade away”.
A 9 day retreat in Stockholm has shown me how much more of the false self I need to let go of ! I’m so grateful! 🙌🔥😊
Floating in the ocean yesterday evening after a very long week at work. It’s one of my favorite things to do – float in water. It’s the ultimate letting go, the ultimate trust, and I always feel connected to the pulse of the Universe.
I will be floating in a lake with friends next weekend. It is a “thing” there. At first I was like “what”? It is very relaxing!!
Have you ever tried the float spas? something different, you might enjoy:)
Never heard of a float spa! Seems like something the area I live near might have… thank you!
I really like your reflection Patti. I love swimming, but sometimes fear comes up when I think about swimming in deep waters. I will try to practice trusting more the next time I go swimming.
Thanks, Jenifer! Floating on top of those deeper waters can be very freeing…. 🙂
I have read the responses and have not come up with words to answer this question. Everyday I am baffled by life and death and all the in between.
Appreciate the reminder to allow room for accepting life’s mysteries given my tendency to always want to derive and understand. Something I will work on!
Earlier this morning I was perusing files from 2010 and found a letter written by Carl Jung to a woman that wanted to know how she should live. I had already read today’s quote from Br. David: “Sometimes people get the mistaken notion that spirituality is a separate department of life, the penthouse of existence. But rightly understood, it is a vital awareness that pervades all realms of our being.” And so, when I read today’s question asking: What is something I experienced recently that connected me to life’s mystery, I thought of the best definition I have ever found for spirituality: Awareness…Awareness…Awareness. Jung’s letter to this woman was a reminder that life’s mystery must be embraced not necessarily understood. I share the letter below:
n December 15, 1933, Jung responded to a woman who had asked his guidance on, quite simply, how to live:Dear Frau V., Your questions are unanswerable because you want to know how one ought to live. One lives as one can. There is no single, definite way for the individual which is prescribed for him or would be the proper one. If that’s what you want you had best join the Catholic Church, where they tell you what’s what. Moreover this way fits in with the average way of mankind in general. But if you want to go your individual way, it is the way you make for yourself, which is never prescribed, which you do not know in advance, and which simply comes into being of itself when you put one foot in front of the other. If you always do the next thing that needs to be done, you will go most safely and sure-footedly along the path prescribed by your unconscious. Then it is naturally no help at all to speculate about how you ought to live. And then you know, too, that you cannot know it, but quietly do the next and most necessary thing. So long as you think you don’t yet know what this is, you still have too much money to spend in useless speculation. But if you do with conviction the next and most necessary thing, you are always doing something meaningful and intended by fate. With kind regards and wishes, Yours sincerely, C.G. Jung, Recorded in Selected Letters of C.G. Jung 1909-1961
Thank you, Carol. I too will need more than one read.
Carol, I agree with you that spirituality is awareness. Awareness of our thoughts, feelings, and actions, which can leads us towards determining our next course of action. I know for me, I have a hard time figuring out what the “necessary” next steps are. It wasn’t until I read a quote from Melody Beattie’s book, “Journey to the Heart”, that has shaped the way I make decisions. The quote goes “Who you are is love. What love does is heal”.
When I am overwhelmed with feelings of fear, depression, or hopelessness, I repeat the quote to myself and be still. I then begin to ask myself “What does love and healing look like in this very moment?” To me, love and healing looks like taking care of my basic needs, such as eating, hydrating, showering, or moving my body in some way. Love and healing also looks like reaching out for support from friends and family. Love and healing looks like being gentle and kind to myself during times of distress. Like the last line of Carl Jung’s letter, I believe these actions are meaningful and intended by fate.
Thank you Jenifer – your reflection resonates with me.
Thank you Jenifer, Your words are very inspiring and helpful.
I will have to read this letter a few times to internalize its meaning fully. I was comforted by the sentence: “that if you do with conviction the next and most necessary thing, you are always doing something meaningful and intended by fate.” This is a great goal to be ordinary with intention.
Yram, I love that line, too. For me, it’s a reminder that fighting, fleeing or freezing (sitting down in the middle of the road!) is very seldom fruitful.
Good morning, friends,
On Saturday, our great grandkids came with their parents. My grandson comes about every 4 or 6 weeks to help us with chores we can no longer do, which is humbling for us, and at the same time shows us his love for us. We are deeply grateful. That, in itself, is reason for awe and mystery, because I never thought I would need this help. I really didn’t!
And then, I got to play with our great grandkids. It was wonderful, and I want to do it again, soon. They live a good hour or more away, and have to get here on the interstate, which is, it seems, always under construction on their end or ours.
I guess the great mystery for me is how I never thought I would be on this end of life, or needing help, or having great grandkids to play with! And yet, here I am…..gratefully experiencing the imagination and energy of two little boys while playing Picasso Tiles.
And I want to tell you the most extraordinary thing I learned from them! One of them forgot to put a door on his house, and I asked how the people would get inside. They both looked at me in astonishment and said-at the same time-“GG(they call me GG, it stands for Great Grandma)they transport in!” Imagine that! Such bright children who taught their GG something!!! Mystery. Life is a mystery!
The unbridle joy and exuberance for life that our 5 year old grandson Emerick possess.
As I read through others’ responses, I felt awe for the way Spirit moves through our lives in so many different ways but always leads us back to love.
The dawn of this new day, awakening all to its wonder and promises……a true mystery.
The transformation of my father’s perspectives and attitudes after my mother’s death. My dad was so critical of others before my mother died. During her battle with dementia, I watched him transform into a grateful man who stood up for others in situations where he would have walked away in the past.
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