Your awesome is larger than Yankee Stadium. Move the world with it.

This final audio post in my Best of Summer Posts for 2012 series, Move the World with Your Awesome, is meant to inspire you to move beyond what you imagine is possible. You can do it. I know you can.

To listen, click on the link, and you should automatically be able to hear it. If not, right click the link, then save to your desktop to listen on your own audio software.

Imagine two hands reaching up to the sky, palms open. One hand is receiving while the other is letting go. It looks as though they are both doing the same thing, but they are not.

Being open to receiving good things in your life requires a heart and mind willing to accept them. Being open to letting go at the very same time means you do not try to control the outcome, duration or quality of the gift you will receive. It’s an extremely Zen concept to let all things be as they are while also being witness, and participant, in their progress.

As I continue to read Buddha’s Brain, I have become aware of an important distinction between craving and desire. Craving is a level of neediness that leaves you forever unfulfilled while desire is an intention that will either be fulfilled or not. The key here is not to be attached to the outcome either way. You desire something, but whether it comes to pass or not is another thing altogether (for all of you reading this, I desire a major book contract for a new idea that’s burning in my own brain, but should it not come to pass, I will find other avenues to lend it expression).

Chocolate is something we crave. Wealth is something we desire. But if we crave wealth, we may end up very unhappy people. When is enough really enough? When it comes to money, some would say you can never have enough. But if you come from a perspective of abundance, whatever you have is already more than enough. And with that attitude of abundance, you may find your desires are fulfilled beyond your wildest dreams.

Relationships can be like that. Living in an abundant space of gratitude for the friends and loved ones you do have brings a whole lot more joy than wishing you had more friends (or worse, different ones altogether!). And that brings me back to the open palms ~ if you close your hand to make a fist, you will only eliminate the possibility of more light, love and beauty to come into your life. If you open your hand to show your palm, you may also risk losing what you have. But my guess is the only thing you will really risk losing is the fear that kept your hand closed in the first place.

Raise them up to the sky, people. There is wisdom in the palms of your hands.

The Wisdom of Illness

January 10, 2011

Cruising at an altitude of a low-grade fever, I decided it might be a good idea to visit the doctor yesterday, even though it was Sunday and I had to wait all day for the ’emergency hours’ to be open. My husband kindly drove me the twenty minutes, all the while having to listen to the moans of a person on the brink of another sweat outbreak.

Luckily, we were the first patients to arrive. I tried my hardest not to look ill, but you know, when you are, you are. Peering at the wall of pictures, I expected to be greeted by the grey-haired man who showed up in each of them. Not so. A very young-looking fellow (who, I swear, had an eery resemblence to my son’s best friend, who is, um, ten) welcomingly extended his hand.

“I’d better not,” I said sheepishly, followed by an apology for being rude. He grinned and I knew we were going to get along famously. He escorted me into his office as I peeled off layers of clothing now drenched in my feverish clammyness. A tap here, a look there, and he concluded that I had flu-like symptoms.

I could have told him that.

“Oh, and you have very low blood pressure.”

I cast him a glassy-eyed look. “I’ve been lying down all day.” He grinned again. Somehow he found me amusing. He commented on my accent-free German and tried to distract me with banalities. His recommendation?

“Drink plenty of fluids, take ibuprofen and don’t do anything.”

Ah, the wisdom of illness. It teaches us that we can indeed slow down to the beat of our hearts. Nice.

The doctor was quite pleasant, really, and when I left, I managed to remember not to call him by my son’s best friend’s name.

Luckily, I don’t have the swine flu (my worst fear abated). Illness is a great reminder of the power of slow. A little more beingness, a lot less do-do-do. And if you forget, your body reminds you, landing you in your sickbed for some casual pauses and a moment of pristine rest. 

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Happy New Year!

December 30, 2010

Are you ready to embrace 2011 for all it’s worth? As my gift to you, I offer you a 10-week wisdom course on learning how to embrace the power of slow. You will receive 10 one-minute audio messages to remind you how others have found time to do what they love.

Embrace the slow today! Happy New Year, everyone!

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Quotes on Time

May 21, 2010

My sage stepmother sent me some gems I wanted to share with you. She has an inspirational calendar chock full of wisdom. She even tossed in one of her own. The subject? My favorite: time.

“Life is all about timing… the unreachable becomes reachable, the unavailable become available, the unattainable, attainable. Have the patience. Wait it out. It’s all  about timing.” ~ Stacey Charter

Ah, a delicious notion of savoring the waiting! How we hate to wait! But did you know that the waiting place is the schoolhouse of wisdom? I am beginning to understand that now.

And another of my favorite women writes:

“Since time is the one immaterial object which we cannot influence–either speed up nor slow down, add to nor diminish–it is an imponderably valuable gift.”  ~Maya Angelou

You can expand your consciousness, according to Marianne Williamson. It involves meditation, a slowing down of our internal metronomes to the Oneness of All Things. See NPR interview I did with her.

To cap it off, we have one more beauty to share today:

“Use [time] wisely and enjoy that gift for as long as you have it.” ~ My wise stepmom

So there you have it! What are your favorite quotes on time?

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With age comes wisdom. And while we may see marked changes in our physique, we benefit from an equally noticeable transformation from within. There comes a time in life when we realize residing within instead of setting our compass from without is the path to enlightenment. We become more settled. Our interior landscape is smoother.

Max Ehrmann says:

Take kindly to the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Some people say aging gracefully is impossible. What a spectacular claim! Is it not with age that we become more graceful on this Earth? I may pant up the hill on my mountain bike more readily than even a few years ago. Does that make me less of a person? The years counsel us in ways youth cannot hear. It is a tremendous gift indeed.


Faith prevailing

July 13, 2009

The word faith got some bad play during the interminable eight years of the Bush administration. We started wars in the name of faith. We cut social services in the name of faith (in a collapsing capitalist structure). faith bird

Somewhere along the line we lost the golden thread of faith as the invisible thread to the Divine that informs our Being. Kind of like the reason we’re here, and all.

But today’s TUT message got me to thinking. It observes a moment in time when a tiny bird lands on the exact branch it set out to land on. How does it do it, the author asks?

…that little bird just knew. It had faith, in spite of not being able to see how things would work out, that if (and only if) it stayed the course the details would be taken care of; that an opening would appear and a twig would be found. In fact, had she slowed down enough to carefully and logically inspect the tree first, the prudent thing to do, she would have lost her lift and fallen to the ground.

Sometimes overthinking things gets us tied up in a mess. Slowing down is good when it is done in faith that things will work out just as they should. It is in the inner knowing that our Divinity resides, raising us all up and landing us right where we need to be.

Welcome to the new Wednesday Wisdom summer audio series! For the next ten Wednesdays, you’ll be hearing how people find time to do what they love straight from the street.

Dr. Marlene Caroselli, author of 60 books, told me she has eliminated her telephone as the ultimate distractor. She prefers email as the ultimate streamlining tool.

For her inspirational one-minute message on how she does it, listen to Marlene Caroselli here. [Listening instructions: Click on the link, then click on it again for it to open your media player. Be sure your pop-up blocker has been deactivated.]