The community of writers and artists that compose the loving online family I am grateful to be surrounded by here continues to make me feel blessed.
Today I have felt my heart melt and grow at the same time, and all of it is healing and wonderful. Amongst other delightful forays catching up with my WP community, I read a few significant posts that touched me so deeply I shed tears, for various reasons.
First stop in my heart-touching travels was DhammaFootsteps writing with such tenderness and skill on the topic of the passing of his friend, a Buddhist Chaplain. His writing talent and the depth of his lovingkindness continue to humble me and fill me with gratitude that I can read about his observations. My tears began flowing as I read of her clock radio going off and filling the area with classical music. Maya Angelou’s passing and my grief process has been a part of my recent absence from blogging, and Tiramit’s eloquence felt as soothing to my aching heart as refreshingly cool water on an intensely hot day. I needed to read this and plan several rereads of this powerful piece.
Next was Ivon reminding me of how young I was when I began my spiritual journey. At the time I thought I was just tracking the travels of snails and lovingly climbing (and communicating with) old trees. Before I was 10 years old I began feeling the power of God’s love for all of us… for me. I saw it in the beauty of nature and was able to understand, in my youthful openness, that it is His love for us that allows us to see beauty in the changing of the seasons or the brilliant colours on an insect’s wings, the melodious thrill of hearing a bird’s song and the glory of the full moon as it illuminates the night. So much beauty, everywhere we look, and this post reminded me of how deep my love for nature is, and therefore God, and how early it began for me. This is a part of my comment on his post: “Yes when we were little, following the antics of beetles and marveling at clouds, we were wise. This post helps me to remember that wisdom.”
DreamPrayAct was next, where I go to read wisdom shared from Reverend Mark. He posted an important sermon, again moving me to tears. His writing always touches my heart and this time especially I could easily imagine myself sitting in the pews of his congregation, feeling his love. This is part of what I wrote in my comment on his post: “Thank you for filling me with hope and speaking in such positive terms as “You will continue to be a witness to the love of Christ through your ministry presence in this community. You will continue to give spiritual nurture to children and people of all ages.” I adore the phrase ‘ministry presence’ and I deeply appreciate the positive form of your statements throughout this incredible sermon.”
And finally such kindness I discovered from a friend who offered me a tremendous gift: the dedication of her post today. And even beyond that great honor, was the image and poem itself that speaks to me deeply. Sweet Amy at Petals Unfolding (herladypinkrose) offered me the gift of friendship and love in her generous heart with the image of a rose reminding me of the unfolding of blossoms that only happen in their perfect time. This gift, her powerful poem with her incredible photograph of a new precious rosebud slowly opening, is one of the most beautiful gifts I’ve ever been given. Her popular blog sharing a shout-out to me, knowing I am blooming in my own way, doing the best that I can which appears to include some troubles with writing all that I want to share about. Sweet soul-sister Amy, your loving shout-out has been gratefully received, welcomed and embraced as the loving hug it is, and please accept in return my loving celebration of the gift that bloggers such as yourself offer from your endlessly generous hearts. You mean so much and your gift has brought me great love and comfort today, and for always. Thank you kindly.
Along with Tiramit, Ivon, Mark and Amy, there are so many of you who deeply touch my heart as I enjoy reading your kind heartfelt words on the screen. I hope you know who you are (and I do intend to make a Blogroll/Links page to share all your blog’s links) but here’s my shout-out in no order to some who quickly come to mind: Jamie, Joe, Cher, Cathy, Jonathan, Lorrie, Trini-Line, Wendell, Jeanne, Kenneth, Sue, Ihsan, Lillian, Paul, Val, Sriram, Diana, Jack, Eliza, Antonio, Kendra, Sheri, Russ, Ute, Sloan. And so many more who, along with these friends mentioned, I’ll share links to your sites shortly. Stay tuned and watch for the ProfessionsForPeace Links Page coming soon!
Bless your hearts, all you wonderful writers, for the generous lovingkindness you share. You are deeply appreciated and your kindness reaches further than you may know. And I am so proud and honored to be a part of this loving online family. With loving friendship and respect, Gina
[with gratitude to the creators of these unsourced images]
“Christian, Jew, Muslim, Shaman, Zoroastrian, stone, ground, mountain, river… each has a secret way of being with the mystery, unique and not to be judged.” ~ Rumi
Love is not a sentimental emotion. Love is a state of being, a force of the Universe. Love is the binding energy at the core of all Creation. Love pulls and holds all things together. Atoms are drawn to one another to create themselves into molecules. Molecules unite into cell, cells into matter, muscle, blood and bones. Love holds the moon to the earth, the earth to the sun, the sun to the galaxy. We exist because of Love. Love is the Great Attractor, the permanent, binding energetic fusion that holds all Creation together, uniting us into One. ~ Ann Mortifee, In Love With The Mystery
If you’re not following Neil deGrasse Tyson’s COSMOS, I encourage you to check it out.
Be prepared to be inspired and amazed! [click to visit website CosmosOnTV.com]
We can only be said to be alive in those moments when
our hearts are conscious of our treasures. ~Thornton Wilder
“You are the pot of gold at the end of my rainbow.” This darling expression is a favorite of mine, especially when making crafts with children around Saint Patrick’s Day.
I feel that way about my readers too. Yes, you! I am deeply grateful for the friends I have made through this blog. There are so many good people in the world, and many of you wonderful people have found your way here. Your visits encourage me to do something I love: share things that I find inspiring. Every post is created with the hopes that it may brighten another’s face with a smile, lift a weary heart, inspire someone’s faith, or help spark a person’s creativity.
It is amidst the process of sharing these topics that I myself am elevated. So thank you. My gratitude goes out to each and every one of you who travel with me on this fascinating and expansive blogging experience. Along with your own inspirational blogs, it is through your presence reading what I share and offering your Likes, Comments, and Follows that you add lovely blessings to my life.
My treasure for you at the end of this rainbow is actually a mirror, because I’d like you to look into it. You are the gold. You are a treasure. Thank you for being here. Namaste. Gina
Copyright © 2014 Gina ~ Professions for PEACE
All my life, as far back as I can remember, I have felt a connection with trees. I’ve grasped trunks and branches during youthful climbs and wondered how my hands felt to them. I felt their surface as rough, crumbly, sticky in places with sap, and I wondered if they felt me climbing them as warm, human, fleeting, soft.
One of my earliest memories regarding my family involved a tree. A very tall tree. We lived near the end of a long country road and our yard had a row of tall spruce running along the property line, separating our house and yard from the road. I loved those huge spruce trees and would often climb up to sit, swing and bounce on those sprawling lower branches. For my tiny body of six years those branches made a perfect ladder all the way to the top, and one day I just kept going.
I can still remember the sticky sap that clung to my palms as I reached up to another and then another branch-rung in this ladder to the clouds. That is until the branches were so close together that all I could do was perch on the sturdiest one and hold onto the trunk. It was exhilarating. My heart was happy and excited and I felt so intimately close to that old tree. I felt safe. Cocooned. I even noticed how the breeze made that old tree sway. In my mind it was as if I was nestled in the clouds and I loved it.
Then I looked down through the branches and saw my family in the yard: mother gardening, father working on one of his cars, and much older sister preparing to head out in her own car. I could hear them easily and they were starting to ask each other, “Have you seen Gina?” so I unveiled my hiding spot and cheerily called out to them, “Hi Mom! Hi Dad! Hi Sis!” Unfortunately (but predictably) they didn’t think my being 50 feet up in a narrow evergreen quite as enchanting as I did. My Mom went into a screaming state of panic and her fear was palatable. I suddenly gripped that trunk and felt the rush of a powerful fear.
I climbed down with a much more unhappy energy than I’d climbed up with, but I still give thanks for that memory. The trauma from my mother’s fear helped imprint that day, that moment, into my brain to be permanently stored. I loved that tree, that day, the clouds, the breeze, even the sticky and prickly branches, and my mother’s introduction of fear helped sear that day into me so that I would never forget.
Once I became a mother it was easy to forgive and understand my mom’s frantic, scolding behaviour. While I never experienced looking up a 50-foot tree to see my six-year old child near the top, I can still easily understand her behaviour (although I don’t recommend letting your child SEE your level of panic, if at all possible). Obviously I made it down safely, although the coming down was vastly worse than the going up. I was harshly scolded and forbidden from ever climbing trees again. (Not that it lasted. I discovered an ancient walnut tree as well as a prolific cherry tree at our next home. I figured moving made that ‘No Climbing Trees’ agreement void)
Now mid-life has snuck up on me and those memories are decades old. In my world I now have 50-foot spruce trees on my own property. While I do not feel the urge to push my much-larger body through the branches in an attempt to reach the heights, I feel their roots. I offer love to their roots.
I wonder, is this a part of aging? In my youth I longed for the tip-top branches, swaying in the breeze, and now I respect and appreciate roots where I add compost, occasional fertilizer and water during times of drought.
I myself have put deeper roots down as I cherish these years of my forties. If I may be so lucky this is the halfway point… the true mid-life stage and I intend to show up and put on a good show.
Offering my love and appreciation for the two huge spruce I share this property with is one way I celebrate life. They are old trees, older than I am, and their sprawling shallow roots reach much farther than the drip-line. Their roots might even be under me now as I type in the den facing the street, beside the nearest of the two giant trees as I watch the pattern of the wind in its branches.
If this is the case and the roots are under my feet, may it receive this prayer I offer. May this tree feel my appreciation for the birds it shelters and the shade it offers. May it know those fertilizer spikes I pound in at the drip-line during spring rains are one way I show my love as I attempt to replenish the soil nourishment our city lifestyles rob from urban trees. May it, on some unknown level, feel my loving eyes as I watch its branches from my window and attempt to capture poetic words to describe the beauty I behold. May these old trees, and all the trees in my neighbourhood and the wilderness walks I enjoy, feel my deep appreciation for them and continue to flourish and share their oxygenating, healing energy with us all.
Thank You God for all the Trees.
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The next best time is now.
~ Chinese Proverb
I willingly confess to so great a partiality for trees as tempts me to respect a man in exact proportion to his respect for them.
~ James Russell Lowell
I like trees because they seem more resigned to the way they have to live
than other things do. ~ Willa Cather
[With genuine gratitude for these randomly-sourced royalty-free photos off Google images]