This quote, from the poet May Sarton's writings, is one that is often repeated and illustrated. It is a favorite of many, and certainly of mine as well:
"Help us to be always hopeful gardeners of spirit,
who know that without darkness
nothing comes to birth,
as without light,
You and I, might not be actual gardeners in the traditional sense, but we are all called to be gardeners of spirit - tending our own inner, delicate, souls.
Another famous writer and spiritual figure, John Henry Newman, wrote:
"Growth is the only evidence of life."
And still another, Francis de Sales, noted in the 17th century, that true growth is often a slow and hidden process.
What is to be learned from all this wisdom?
We are told that true growth - within and without - is often slow, and perhaps not noticeable to many outside of us. There are difficult and challenging experiences to be dealt with along the way. There are days of both light and darkness, as well as days of aridity and rain. And we also know that this slow growth is truly evidence of an effervescent life, waiting for its moment to burst forth and shine through.
So, do not be discouraged. Turn these lessons into some positive affirmations that you can repeat to yourself along the way, as reminders of your slow, hidden, but beautiful inner growth:
I am growing deeply, day by day.
My deep roots ground me firmly.
I grow slowly but continously, my branches reaching towards the sky.
Day by day, the sun and soil nourish me.
I am a unique blossom,
and I am a thing of beauty.
Be a spirit gardener and seed the earth with your beauty and uniqueness!
For free resources to support you in your growth and practice, visit:
Gifts 4 U!
If you are anything like me, you are probably easily triggered. By the silliest of things.
Some of mine are: The noise my hard of hearing husband makes in the morning as I am trying to meditate. Or, towels that are not folded "correctly." Or, the overflowing neighborhood cars parked in front of my house. I'll fret over a hypothetical situation like - what if a workman is coming.to repair something that happened overnight? Where will he park?
We all have thoughts and concerns that fill our minds - many of which we can't control - and others which we simply want to control all of the time. Sometimes I remind myself, that NO ONE appointed me Master of the Universe! A hard reality to swallow!
But the reality is, that the things that upset us most about others are things we harbor within ourselves that need our attention and that we need to change. In other words, others hold up a mirror to where we need to do our own work to further our growth.
A couple of days ago, as I was exasperated at all these things I found annoying and irritating - all of them rather silly, I exclaimed to a Higher Power - the Universe: "When will all this stop bothering me?"
And then the answer came so quickly it surprised me: "When it stops bothering you!"
Ah! So, only I can stop this pointless exercise in futility.
And so I told myself, "This has to stop! NONE OF THIS is in any way important!" Really. In the grand scheme of things, this needless worry was taking up oxygen and precious inner resources. And then, I felt an almost immediate sigh of relief.
For a simple practice today, examine the things that are most triggering you. Pick one, and decide you are done with letting it take up free rent in your brain.
Then, start to chip away at the stack systematically. Revisit periodically as needed and you start to let go of all the thoughts that do not serve you.
Practice, and enjoy!
For more simple practices and free resources, visit:
GIFTS 4 U!
You have probably heard the old adage, "Be yourself. Everyone else is taken."
This is so true, but so hard to wrap our brains around because we often do not believe that we are enough - not good enough, not smart enough - well, just not enough...
But we are. Why? Because each one of us is an irrepeatable spark of Divine Light. No one like us has ever been, or will be again.
Read that again.
So I say to you:
Be bold. Be brave. Be you!
This morning, I read this wonderful quote:
"The way you treat yourself is one of the few things you control in life. There’s no reason to be anything but kind to yourself, in both your speech and your actions."
Toni Bernhard, “Self-Care in an Uncertain World”
So yes, you are you - unique in every way. Notice your self talk. Treating others well begins with us treating ourselves well.
Go out today - and every day, and simply,
Be Bold! Be Brave. Be Beautiful. Be who you are and BE that well! Be YOU!
Supportive resources wait for you here:
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On this day of August 8th, often called the Lion's Gate, because the numbers of the day are 8:8, there is supposed to be a special energy that permeates the day and allows for creativity and change.
I don't think it matters whether you believe in this or not. I think you can choose to see this day as one of change or transformation. But then, I sincerely believe that all days can be that, if we invite that change and transformation into our lives.
One of the easiest ways to do this is by formulating an affirmation that is relevant to our circumstance, and then repeating it over and over again, until it becomes our reality.
Mostly, the affirmations should benefit us on a personal level, but they can also have an impact on a global level as well. When we change. The world changes too. You have have heard the adage, "Change your mind, and change your life." I would also add this: "Change your life and you change the world."
Here is a wonderful affirmation for all of to embody:
"I am Pure Love."
Close your eyes and think of what your life would be like, and the impact you would have if you truly believed that you are pure love. Then imagine the world this would be if everyone believed it as well. There would be peace, and harmony, acceptance, cooperation, and creative solutions would flow from all those things.
Repeat this affirmation over and over again in your meditation or quiet moments. Repetition will make it your mantra.
You ARE Pure Love!
Yes! I believe it. YOU are pure Love. And so am I. It's just that many of us have just not recognized it.
Go out and shine that Love and Light that you are at your essence!
And if you would like FREE helpful resources to enable you to engage in more mindful living, visit:
GIFTS 4 U!
This is the time of year many of us go on vacation...
We begin to slow down....
My favorite places to visit are religious or spiritual in nature - mostly connected to a spiritual titan of the past. I relish walking the same land and perhaps the same path that someone I hold in high esteem for their thoughts or insightful writings once walked.
But don't get me wrong, I like a beach trip or a European trip as much as much as anyone else as well!
For several years, at least before the pandemic, I loved going to Florida, where I went to college, to visit many friends, and relatives that live there.
But I've especially enjoyed exploring places - or journeying deep inside of myself just as much as getting on a plane. Yes, I call it - taking a journey of the heart...
Whether you go away this summer, or whether you are unable to venture forth, go on a pilgrimage of the heart, It doesn't take much or cost anything. Just some quiet time is all that is needed. And some stillness. A good meditation. A leisurely walk. Or, reading a good book.
Just try it and see. You might surprise yourself and venture much further than you ever imagined or thought possible, without stepping out anywhere!
Gifts to nourish your soul can be accessed here:
Gifts 4 U!
Recently I came across this wonderful African word - "tinogona." It simply means, it is achievable.
We do not have a similar word in English. It often amazes me, how in other cultures and languages there can be tens of words to designate unique qualities or aspects of emotions such as love or things like snow - but English is not really that kind of language - perhaps it is more precise than it is nuanced.
Tinogona - it is achievable - is an incredibly hopeful word - at least to me. It seems to convey encouragement and positivity and the belief that anything can be possible. There is a certain solace and comfort to that.
Take a moment to consider your greatest and seemingly most insurmountable challenges in this moment of your life. Close your eyes. Hone into the scene. Then imagine a different outcome from the one you have been playing out in your mind. See the situation resolved with ease and grace. And perhaps, a solution arises in your mind you could not have have envisioned otherwise.
Or, consider the same scene or another experience or challenge. Perhaps something you would like to achieve or create. Focus on the perceived difficulties but imagine that they can be overcome. Simply say to yourself, "It is achievable."
We can turn this simple word into a practice in our lives. It is both plain and powerful. I invite you to follow these suggestions or one of your own making and see if the challenge in question does not become achievable in some way.
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One of the hardest things to do is to simply observe things. As they are. Without judgment.
Often, when we observe we are already imagining an outcome to our liking. Or we allow ourselves to get involved emotionally in the situation in question. Then we absorb everything going on in that situation, whether it pertains to us or not.
Have you ever noticed how others are quick to give advice on social media? Someone recently posted on a thread I was following, that the ones who are often most prone to offer advice, especially to people they don't know, are the least equipped to do so.
This morning, I had a person call me and unload her personal drama on me. I tried to be empathetic without involving myself in the drama, and merely listen. At the end I suggested that perhaps she and the other person involved were seeing things from very different perspectives. And perhaps the behavior that was being perceived as aggressive really stemmed from the other individual having a deep fear of losing a grip or control in several areas of her life..
I don't know if what I suggested was received. I don't know if it made a difference. And, it really doesn't matter. I don't have all the information or both sides of the story. I simply tried my best to observe, and not absorb and most especially not be drawn into the drama.
Normally, I get emotionally tied up in other people's drama, but not today. I choose to listen. To observe. And not absorb. And then at the end, I let go of it all. At least for today. Tomorrow is another day.
All I can do is observe. Not absorb. One day at a time. And try to make this a habit over time.
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Today's entry is very simple. It is summer in one part of the world and that invites us to live in greater simplicity. In another part of the world, it is going into winter, and that invites introspection and one to slow down as well. Either way, the season invites rest.
Are you too busy? Feeling overwhelmed?
Then rest! Take time to:
That is what I am doing right now.
Last night I gave myself permission to let go of tasks and goals I had set out for the year. It felt instantly freeing. Instead, I thought to myself - "Let's just see where things go. Let me be open to whatever presents itself." So yes! Just:
If you don't take time to rest, you can't reflect. And if you don't have time to reflect, you won't be able to figure out what you need to replenish - and make your life better, more peaceful, and joyous.
It's really that simple. Try it!
Want some tools to help you on your journey? Check out:
GIFTS 4 U!
Are you one of those persons always in motion? Always trying to get from point A to point B?
Have you spent most of your life acquiring things - degrees, trainings, certificates, collectibles?
Is life always about "more this" or "more that?"
Is it about traveling to every state or as many countries as you can? Or learning more languages? Or getting better at a game - a sport - or something?
Are things always a means to an end?
We spend a lot of our lives working towards something. But what I am coming to realize more and more as I get older is - that it's not about the destination. It's always about the journey.
Now, looking back at my life, I am seeing more deeply that "less is more."
If I could do some things again - I'd certainly acquire less. Now, I am consumed with establishing a more zen like life - with less material things - less striving - and less "to do" things on my list. But it's not easy. There is the continual matter of what to do with stuff. There is an overwhelming urge to simplify.
It's the journey that matters. It's what shapes us and makes us who we really are.
But here's the thing. It's never too late to change.
Stop. Slow down. Simplify. Savor and enjoy the journey. Don't worry about getting anywhere! It's all about the ride!
For more simple practices, visit:
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Recently, on a walk, I was almost oblivious to the beauty surrounding me, worrying about something that I can't even remember right now. And then, out of nowhere - I felt this message, very clearly, in the depths of my soul:
What was, was.
What is, is.
What will be, will be.
What does this even mean, you might ask? I certainly did.
I cannot change the past - or maybe even what is happening right now. Whatever happens will happen regardless of what I may or may not do. I could influence some outcomes and change my life and its direction - but I can't be assured of any of those things.
What I can change is my attachment to whatever happened in the past - whatever cards I am dealt with now or in the future.
I can look at things with dispassion - and accept them as they are - without attachment. I can also consider things from a non-reactive place. I can change my perspective of what happened in the past or what is occurring right now.
I know, it is easier said than done.
I can also strive to be the best person I that I can be - live the best life that I can - and not beat myself up for whatever happens or what I consider my failings to be. Because, after all, we all fail.
How many of us live and re-live past infractions over and and over again in our minds, as if we could possibly change the outcomes? I know I do. But here's the thing. We can't go back and change what happened. But we can look at it differently. There are always lessons for us in every experience or past event. There are lessons we are learning right now, it this moment. And others that we have yet to experience and digest.
I felt I was also being reminded to live in the present moment and to let go of the past and future. For really, now is the only moment there is. To really live this way, would be to live in a way that is unencumbered.
Maybe you need this message as well:
What was, was.
What is, is.
What will be, will be.
For more simple spiritual practices, and free gifts, visit:
Gifts 4 U!
olga rodriguez Rasmussen
Changing the world!