Happiness

Years ago, I read Marion Milner’s book published under the name Joanna Field, A Life of One’s Own.

I was inspired by the exploration.  Today I again receive these words of Marion Milner:

I had just begun to ponder over the fact that all the things which I had found to be sources of happiness seemed to depend upon the capacity to relax all straining, to widen my attention beyond the circle of personal interest, and to look detachedly at my own experience.

A Way to Explore San Francisco Bay

Evening Thoughts

I used to enjoy watching football and then I stopped when my husband and I watched a documentary on what it does to the players who suffer on the field and for years after.  It’s not a sport and it’s not a game.

These last few 49’er games, I got sucked in again but then today I watched as our third-string quarterback was injured almost immediately.  On the instant replay you can see the painful action over and over again.  In comes the fourth string guy, and immediately the same play with his hand and shoulder swung back, but in this case, his head also hits the ground hard.  He has a concussion and is out of the game.  In comes an injured Brock who is unable to throw the ball, a requirement for a quarterback.  The “game” has just begun but is essentially over.  Where is the sport in that?

We wouldn’t allow this brutality  in animals.  Why do we allow it in humans, who yes, are also animals, though touted as more intelligent, though one might wonder if this is so.  A rattlesnake only bites when in danger.  A skunk only sprays the same.  Why then, are men put on a field to battle and at such a cost to their health now and in the future?  It’s time to stop.

I quote John Lewis, an amazing man, politician, and civil rights leaders who had nothing to do with football, and yet, maybe his words unite us in honoring and reflecting on all that we think, watch, and do.  

John Lewis:

And if you follow your truth down the road to peace and the affirmation of love, if you shine like a beacon for all to see, then the poetry of all the great dreamers and philosophers is yours to manifest in a nation, a world community, and a Beloved Community that is finally at peace with itself.

An egret reflecting a stance of peace
Celebrate chiming peace
Sound Peace!

Imagination

We spent yesterday with our three year old grandson.  What a treat and what a great deal of stimulation for us all.

What I see is how set in tracks we older folks can sometimes be.  When he announced a little car he was steering around needed people in the seats, I was going to go downstairs to bring up some people from another set, but he simply reached around and placed two bristle blocks, one red, one yellow in the 12 inch red Ferrari.  People placed.  

A Beatrix Potter stuffed rabbit, twice the size of the car, was also able to drive the car around.  No problem.  

Today I sit stretching my mind like a clothesline, hanging thoughts to air.

Wonder!
View from Sausalito yesterday!

A Grieving Nation

I haven’t watched the videos of the attack on Paul Pelosi or the brutal murder of Tyre Nichols but I feel it as we all must.  What now? How do we turn it all around?  I have no answers but my grandchild comes to visit today and I’m grateful to be with innocence, exploration, and discovery.  We’ll go on a bear hunt for sure.

Circling

A Taste of Spring

Yesterday the air was filled with the smell of acacia.  Yum!

The wind has been blowing over my potted Camellia plant so as I cleared branches from the center I remembered how buildings in Hong Kong are designed with holes known as “dragon gates”.  

I open my abode and being to “dragon gates” today. 

Acacia Flowering

Camellia bud beginning to open and spread
Morning fog clearing

By the Water

Again, today I recognized how blessed I am to have the offices of my medical people by the water. I arrived early this morning for my appointment and walking along stopped and first looked out and then looked up to see a Black Crowned Night Heron above my head. Gifts abound.

A quiet morning for the birds
Observing the world
Is it time for lunch?
Just resting and hanging out
Mr. Firefighter makes sure the plants are wet.

Year of the Rabbit

The Chinese Lunar New Year begins on Sunday.  It’s the Year of the Rabbit, the Water Rabbit.

This has been the Year of the Tiger symbolized by action and impulse so we’re moving into a year of self-reflection and tranquility.  The rabbit is a symbol of peace, and is considered the luckiest of the 12 zodiac animals as it represents peace and longevity. May it be so!

The New Moon brings king tides to our area so we watch the numbers and plan when and where to walk and drive.  The bay overflows and then mud is exposed, in and out, two high tides and two low alternating through day and night.

We, too, as Walt Whitman wrote contain multitudes. It’s time to embrace all with opening and closing a heart-clasp of change.

Pema Chodron in Where is Buddha?

When we look into our own hearts and begin to discover what is confused and what is brilliant, what is bitter and what is sweet, it isn’t just ourselves that we’re discovering. We’re discovering the universe. 

Swirl in the eye of heart
Cormorants dry their wings by the bay

Inspiration

It’s a day to honor a great man who spoke of Light and Love as he urged us to action and change.  

Martin Luther King, Jr.

The time is always right to do what is right.

From Richard Rohr today: 

In Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Beyond Vietnam” speech, he spoke from the “big frame” to call for a revolution of values based on love: 

This call for a worldwide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one’s tribe, race, class, and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing and unconditional love for all [humankind].… When I speak of love I am not speaking of some sentimental and weak response. I’m not speaking of that force which is just emotional bosh. I am speaking of that force which all of the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life. Love is somehow the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality. This Hindu-Muslim-Christian-Jewish-Buddhist belief about ultimate reality is beautifully summed up in the first epistle of Saint John: “Let us love one another, for love is of God. And everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God, for God is love.… If we love one another, God dwelleth in us and [God’s] love is perfected in us” [1 John 4:7–8, 12]. Let us hope that this spirit will become the order of the day. [2]

Look up and ground

Integration

The rain continues, an accompaniment one has come to expect, and yet, it paused for the 49’er game yesterday which helped the 49’er team to win.  The sun is predicted to appear on Tuesday.  

I listen to the tapping now, a reminder to step within to balance movement and pause, silence and sound. 

I’m with these words of Ajahn Brahm from Stepping Towards Enlightenment

Attend closely with sharp mindfulness when one thought ends and before another begins—there! That is silent awareness! It may be only momentary at first, but as you recognize that fleeting silence, you become accustomed to it; the silence lasts longer. 

And for those at Tahoe, the Joy of Snow!
Taste Fully This Living We Share

Transformation

The rain pours down.  We’ve had hail, thunder, lightning, the works, and I feel a cleansing as roots are nourished and pampered.  Yes, continuing rain is creating problems, and I’m with these words of Robin Wall Kimmerer:

If grief can be a doorway to love, then let us all weep for the world we are breaking apart so we can love it back to wholeness again.

Transition in Grays