Tag Archive | spirituality

Kahlil Gibran On Teaching

teacher who is wise leads you to your threshold Gibran

Then said a teacher, ‘Speak to us of Teaching.’
And he said:
No man can reveal to you aught but that which already lies half asleep in the dawning of your knowledge.
The teacher who walks in the shadow of the temple, among his followers, gives not of his wisdom but rather of his faith and his lovingness.
If he is indeed wise he does not bid you enter the house of wisdom, but rather leads you to the threshold of your own mind.
The astronomer may speak to you of his understanding of space, but he cannot give you his understanding.
The musician may sing to you of the rhythm which is in all space, but he cannot give you the ear which arrests the rhythm nor the voice that echoes it.
And he who is versed in the science of numbers can tell of the regions of weight and measure, but he cannot conduct you thither.
For the vision of one man lends not its wings to another man.
And even as each one of you stands alone in God’s knowledge, so must each one of you be alone in his knowledge of God and in his understanding of the earth.

 

Khalil Gibran self portrait c.1911Lebanese artist, writer and poet Kahlil Gibran‘s novel from 1923 “The Prophet” has been translated to over forty languages, has sold over 100 million copies, and has never been out of print. Click here to view it on Amazon. According to Wikipedia, Kahlil Gibran is the third best-selling poet of all time, only behind William Shakespeare and Lao-Tzu. [This paragraph to this point was previously shared in my post On Children]

On the right is a self-portrait he painted in 1911. Click image to visit source on Wikipedia.

My own copy of ‘The Prophet’ was given to me as a cherished gift from my brother-in-law nearly thirty years ago. It has since been read repeatedly and is wonderfully worn. I recommend it for every library so that all may read and enjoy its poetic wisdom. Namaste. Gina

[I cannot recall where I found this bright poster-image and give loving thanks to the maker of it. I will immediately add the source if/when I locate it. As always, I welcome any info in my comments.]

Whom Shall I Fear?

playing guitarLearning to play guitar, like gardening, is a lifelong process. I wear my left-hand fingertip calluses proudly. One of the best things about playing guitar is enjoying it with my husband. It has become quite a bonding experience for us. I’m so grateful for his humility and patience as I began playing years after he did.

Music touches the soul and plucks inner chords we didn’t even know were there.

guitar pick Music speaksChristian rock is a style of music that often has me singing as tears wet my face. I am proud to worship even if I’m perhaps more all-encompassing and non-denominational that most contemporary Christian music concert-goers. But the same way that the Bible is an incredibly wise book available to all to read and learn from no matter their faith, so too is the music of this genre an enlivening style that brightens the hearts of so many listeners.

While I frequently listen to instrumental music when driving, if traffic is not too congested I’ll turn on the radio and enjoy my local Christian music station. This song came on and although I’d never heard it before I began singing along. There are times when it feels like my chest is peeling open because I’m filled with so much love and gratitude. This song continues to elicit this response.

Anyone who has the the desire and determination can learn how to play this song because the chords are included with this video. Learning to play any song requires repetition, and that helps the wisdom seep in. I highly recommend it! 

May this timeless truth expressed with musical passion brighten your heart and your day.

Chris Tomlin
Christopher Dwayne “Chris” Tomlin is an American contemporary Christian music (CCM) artist, worship leader, and songwriter who has sold nearly 30 million records.
He is a husband and father who was born on May 4, 1972 in Grand Saline, Texas, United States.

Divine Refreshment


Dehydration has been shown to negatively impact people’s moods. Mild dehydration is “associated with confusion, fatigue, and negative moods.” Moderate dehydration symptoms include “lethargy or extreme sleepiness”. [source]

As with dehydration, an early symptom of a weakened spiritual connection is a feeling of listlessness, making us wonder why our zest for life seems to have evaporated.

Symptoms similar to dehydration surface when I have been negligent with my prayer and meditation practice. The ‘busyness’ of life and the distractions of pain are excuses I’ve used to allow lapses in my prayer practice. It’s terribly ironic that when I need that grounding connection the most is when I often forget to be still and go within.

Let’s remember to refresh our body and our spirit. As I reach for a glass of water, I also reach within. I bring my glass to set on the table beside my small altar. I close the door, light the candle and have a seat. It is time. God patiently waits while I run around distracted and in pain. At last I notice my spiritual dehydration and take a moment, no – I make the time – to sit down and empty my mind. Calm those thoughts. Observe them and let them dissolve. Feel the deep calm and bubbling-up of love that rises to the surface to fill all of my life, if I will but make the time to actively pursue my connection with God. Once I am quiet enough it feels as though the still small voice within seems to whisper ‘there you are’.

I like to remember this old poem by an unknown author:

Whoso draws near to God one step, through doubtings dim,
God will advance a mile in blazing light to him.

(Note: To my women friends and spiritual sisters, we know this is beyond gender and speaks to the love God has for us all: if we will take ‘one step’, God will advance towards us ‘a mile’.)

Today I propose that we maintain proper hydration for our spirits as well as our bodies. As healing as a glass of water is for the dehydrated, actively maintaining our spiritual connection nourishes our soul and refreshes our life. Energy and vitality return, bringing a flush of growth in the form of enriched gratitude and renewed awareness of our vast blessings.

Whether you turn to the scriptures of God or other spiritual texts or turn towards a walk in the woods, whether you sit to pray at an altar or practice meditative yoga, whatever works to help you feel God’s love surrounding you, do that. Let us strengthen our relationship with the One who patiently waits. It is we who must make that first step. We must pick up the glass. God is waiting to fill it to overflowing if we but ask.

Are you feeling hectic and busy? Overwhelmed? Depressed? Tired? Take a pause. Close your eyes and go within. Relish some deep calming breaths. Pray, or go for a prayerful walk. You deserve some nourishing refreshment of the most divine kind.

Copyright © 2014 Gina ~ Professions for PEACE

[Gratitude to the makers of these amazing images found on Pinterest and Google]

Have Faith that we will have Peace

Some people are filled by compassion and a desire to do good, and some simply don’t think anything’s going to make a difference.

~Meryl Streep

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[Clicking on the panel of images opens the slideshow for larger viewing, saving, and sharing. Namaste]

Don’t Wait For Perfect

wait too long perfect moment passEcclesiastes 11:4 TLB ~ “If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done.”

“Procrastination is the thief of time.”
~ Edward Young, English Poet

“Don’t wait for the perfect moment; your opportunity is now. Do what you can, where you are, with what you have.”
~ Theodore Roosevelt

“One day you will wake up and there won’t be any more time to do the things you’ve always wanted. Do it now.” ~ Paulo Coelho

life has no remote“If we wait until we’re ready, we’ll be waiting for the rest of our lives.” ~ Lemony Snicket

“Don’t wait. The time will never be ‘just right’.” ~ Napoleon Hill

“Don’t wait for the perfect moment. Take the moment and make it perfect!” ~ Aryn Kyle

“There are seven days in the week and someday isn’t one of them.” ~ Anonymous

“Stop waiting for things to happen. Go out and make them happen.” ~ Anonymous

if not now when 

Ann MortifeeToday is the day to begin anew the great adventure. Today is the day to resolve to awaken in every moment. Today is the day to commit, to determine, to live, to love. This is the day in which to serve our highest dream. If we wait for circumstances to align in the way we desire, we may wait forever. Tomorrow is an illusion. Today is the day to breathe in the mysterious possibility that life now offers. Regardless of what surrounds us, this is the day to begin.
~ Ann Mortifee, In Love With The Mystery

Remaining Balanced

i-love-present-moment sri chinmoy

Ann Mortifee ~ “When we become overwhelmed by the events and burdens of our life, we can be sure that we are either projecting into the future or ruminating about the past. If we worry about how far we have to go when climbing a mountain, we will falter. But if we place one foot in front of the other, attending to the step we are taking in the present moment, we will eventually take one more step and find ourselves at the top. Our inner stability is found, not in the future or the past, but in being masters of the present moment. The step to follow will always appear once we have tended to the step we are in the process of taking right now.”

enjoy NOWRecently I was pleasantly surprised to be given a copy of Ann Mortifee’s book In Love With The Mystery. As I wrote in the email subject line happily sent to the friend who gifted me with it, even after I’d thanked and hugged her for it in person, I am In Love With This Book!

It is an amazingly beautiful and very wise book that I won’t begin to review but rather will state that I am cherishing every page… every paragraph… every word.

Today I opened it randomly to the passage above. It resonated with me deeply. The practice of remaining awake and aware of the present moment has strengthened my inner stability. It’s the erroneous habit of projecting and ruminating that pulls me off center. Staying in the now, I support my inner balance.

“It is a mistake to try and look too far ahead.
The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time.” ~ Winston Churchill

not a rehearsal dyer

Wayne Dyer: “There’s an irony to this habit of letting your mind drift to other times and other places. You can only drift off in the now, because now is all you ever get. So drifting off is a way of using up your present moments. You do indeed have a past, but not now! And, yes, you have a future, but not now! You can consume your now with thoughts of ‘then’ and ‘maybe’ but that will keep you from the inner peace you could experience.”

Today I choose to remain reminded of this present moment. Show me God how to live one day at a time. I will do what I can with joy and enthusiasm, and trust You to do what I cannot. Now is my moment.

My Word is NOW

make present wonderful Thich

“The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

Recently I’ve been contemplating the word ‘Now’. If my mind wanders during meditation, I bring my awareness back to my breath. Lately, if my mind wanders during the day into future imaginings or recollections of the past, I’ve been gently bringing my attention fully back into this moment. Just this moment. And then this moment. And so on. That’s all there is, and yet it’s not so simple.

As beings of habit, we tend to do what we’ve always done. The act of developing good habits is worth every effort required. And remaining in the NOW is a very good habit.

present moment Dyer 350Some may argue that everything happens in the present moment, and all thoughts of the past or the future are actually happening in the now. But while that logic holds on some level, it doesn’t erase the fact that our life erodes the longer we step out of the present and wander into the future or the past with our thoughts.

This morning I caught myself thinking about someone I saw over the holidays… wondering why I hadn’t heard back after sending a thank you for her gifts… speculating whether or not she liked mine. Then I noticed what I was doing and I changed my mind. It was as easy as bringing my attention to the act of dressing I was doing. Then I looked around and noticed my environment, and gave thanks for it all. I said to myself, “Thank you God for this day” continuing to develop the good habit of remaining present rather than wandering into thoughts that do not serve me.

Wayne Dyer 200Wayne Dyer: “Have you noticed how often we use up the present moments of our lives, the very precious currency of life, consumed with a longing to be someplace else, doing something else? Or we waste present moments feeling guilty about the past or apprehensive about the future. Slipping away from the present happens because we are living our lives with an attitude of depreciation rather than appreciation. We can ease this dilemma by learning to pay attention to what’s going on in the inner world of our thoughts.”

Staying fully awake and aware of only this moment is a habit I intend to keep working on, like a mental muscle I’m developing. It will become more ingrained with practice and there are many benefits. By releasing imaginary meandering into future events that haven’t happened I can be more effective in creating my future by visualizing the best possible outcome. By releasing aimless mental wandering into my past I can more fully move forward while forgiving past hurts or wrongdoings. I intend to be conscious of my thoughts.

It’s about not allowing aimless thoughts to wander without focus and fall into fearful thinking. Thoughts of regret about the past and anxious worries of the future increase our stress and lower our energy. I choose to engage in thoughts that raise my energy. I choose to remain aware of my thoughts. I choose to visualize a positive future and remember what I’ve learned from the past and move forward in confidence. I choose to remain in the now.

This is my ‘Word for 2014’ ~ NOW. A word for me to focus on, contemplate, learn from, and grow with. Have you selected a special word to focus on for this year? I encourage you to do it!

Copyright © Gina ~ Professions For PEACE 2014