I am encouraged by all of the caring efforts, good wishes and prayer arising in our world to surround the Ukrainian and Russian people suffering from Putin’s war. We too can be a source of that care and in that aim please join me this week in setting a reminder or chime or using a sound that you often hear (wind chimes, a truck beeping as it backs up, a dog barking, etc) to signal you to pause for a moment. When you hear the chime wherever you are, even if you are in mid action, stop for 30 seconds to a minute to take stock of where you are: notice your body sensations, gestures, emotions and thoughts. Notice without: criticism or judgment, changing or altering or improving, or identifying. Remember it doesn’t have to take much time. Then take three conscious breaths breathing with the words “Lord Have Mercy” in Russian "Gospodi Pomiliuj." Breath in silently the word "Gospodi" (Ghos-poh-dee) aware in your mind of "I" and aware of sensation in the center of your chest or solar plexus. Breath out silently the word "Pomiluj" (Pa-me-la-we) aware in your mind of “Am” and aware of sensation in the whole body. We will offer this as a collective prayer for our world, as a way of continuing to create sun in our whole self, and especially for our family in the Ukraine and Russia. You may even want to listen here to these words in song (sent to me from Nina Lanctot).
I also encourage you to continue to work with the invitation I shared last week from Cynthia Bourgeault to work with creating Sun and creating moon in yourself this Lenten season. If you are interested in hearing more about this you can listen to this topic here on my dear friend Faye’s wisdom session through Trinity Episcopal Church.
I would love to hear from you about what you are learning as you take on a substance to understudy. You can reply to this email with any experiences you are having or quotes/readings you are discovering on the fruit or the habit. I may not be able to respond but know that I will read them all.
Lord Have Mercy on us all,
Here most of the Readings from this week's pauses:
"There is a special quality of stillness in a person who encounters the shadow wholeheartedly. Your body may relax in their company because it understands, in the subtle communications of their presence, that nothing is excluded in themselves, therefore nothing in you can be rejected. Such a person, who has given up guarding against the shadow, who has come to wear their scars with dignity, no longer squirms from discomfort or bristles at suffering. They no longer brace in avoidance of conflict. They carry a deep willingness to dance with the inconstancy of life. They've given up distancing as a strategy, and made vulnerability their ally."
— Toko-pa Turner
Come to me
for justice is my yoke,
and gentleness my rule,
and you will discover the state of rest.
Yeshua said: Come to me; my yoke is good, my command is gentle, and you will find repose within you.
— Logion 90 (translations Bauman & Leloup)
My wish for you
Is that you continue Continue To be who and how you are To astonish a mean world With your acts of kindness Continue To allow humor to lighten the burden Of your tender heart Continue In a society dark with cruelty To let the people hear the grandeur Of God in the peals of your laughter Continue To let your eloquence Elevate the people to heights They had only imagined Continue To remind the people that Each is as good as the other And that no one is beneath Nor above you Continue To remember your own young years And look with favor upon the lost And the least and the lonely Continue To put the mantle of your protection Around the bodies of The young and defenseless Continue To take the hand of the despised And diseased and walk proudly with them In the high street Some might see you and Be encouraged to do likewise Continue To plant a public kiss of concern On the cheek of the sick And the aged and infirm And count that as a Natural action to be expected Continue To let gratitude be the pillow Upon which you kneel to Say your nightly prayer And let faith be the bridge You build to overcome evil And welcome good Continue To ignore no vision Which comes to enlarge your range And increase your spirit Continue To dare to love deeply And risk everything For the good thing Continue To float Happily in the sea of infinite substance Which set aside riches for you Before you had a name Continue And by doing so You and your work Will be able to continue Eternally - Maya Angelou