It has been a year.

As you well know it has been a year of the pandemic and of cocooning in the darkness of the womb. Are we ready to emerge? To be birthed?

Although the pandemic isn’t over, people are ‘over’ the pandemic and there is a sense of urgency to return to ‘normal’ in the air. Life is beginning to open up back up and it will continue to be a bumpy road. This is when the real work of healing begins and it is important to emerge consciously. To not slip into a previous autopilot.

As we continue to be present to what is and what is to come, let’s continue to bring some intentional awareness to our process. I know that everyone has had a unique experience of this last year and that it has been full of slowing down for some or speeding up for others. Regardless of what it has been for you, there is already an onslaught of opportunities emerging that weren’t there before. Pause for a moment and ponder these questions.

What do you need to hold onto that you learned this year in your ‘cell,’ as the Dessert Abbas and Ammas call it?

What fell away this past year that you need to not pick back up as you re-enter the world?

What have you cultivated in yourself this year through this time of daily meditation, other established rhythms, and ways of being you may have developed that can be a direct or indirect offering to those around you?

A few re-minders as we move forward: keep your heart open to the suffering and grief. . . allow yourself to experience tiny and substantial joys. . . continue to cultivate resilience and coherence in your nervous system. . . by your presence offer that resilience and coherence to others as a co-regulator. . . stay awake to the longstanding divisions around worldview, domination, and othering through the various ‘isms’ that remain. . . keep showering the cosmos with your prayer.

We offer anchoring and tethering.

We offer surrendering and trusting.

We offer connecting and inter-abiding.

We offer freeing and widening.

We offer the invincibility of our hearts.

With love,


Here the readings from the ‘collective contemplative pauses’ this week:

“There is in all visible things an invisible fecundity, a dimmed light, a meek namelessness, a hidden wholeness. This mysterious Unity and Integrity is Wisdom, the Mother of all, Natura naturans. There is in all things an inexhaustible sweetness and purity, a silence that is a fount of action and joy. It rises up in wordless gentleness and flows out to me from the unseen roots of all created being, welcoming me tenderly, saluting me with indescribable humility. This is at once my own being, my own nature, and the Gift of my Creator’s Thought and Art within me, speaking as Hagia Sophia, speaking as my sister, Wisdom.”

—Thomas Merton, Hagia Sophia

“I’m letting go now, Beloved One, of all my narrow categories, my rigid way of looking at others. Make me loose with compassion, willing to float, willing to drown in Your delicious sea of Love.”

— Hafiz

“Chaos itself is a life force, a time of creative regeneration. It is a descent into the darkness of unknowing and also the prima materia for alchemical change. Only from this primal formless- ness is real change possible, a change that is not conditioned by past structures or ideologies. Chaos images the beauty of what is unpredictable. That is why it is so important not to try to define the future at this time. We have to allow chaos to transform our world, to bring its own quality of wonder into our lives. As in Nietzsche’s famous saying, “You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star.”

— Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee