Sunday, December 21, 2014

A Celebration of Winter Solstice


There is a tendency to want to hurry from autumn to spring, to avoid the long dark days that winter brings. Many people do not like constant days bereft of light and months filled with colder temperatures. They struggle with the bleakness of land and the emptiness of trees. Their eyes and hearts seek color. Their spirits tire of tasting the endless gray skies. There is great rejoicing in the thought that light and warmth will soon be filling more and more of each new day.
 
But winter darkness has a positive side to it. As we gather to celebrate the first turn from winter to spring, we are invited to recognize and honor the beauty in the often unwanted season of winter. Let us invite our hearts to be glad for the courage winter proclaims. Let us be grateful for the wisdom winter brings in teaching us about the need for withdrawal as an essential part of renewal. Let us also encourage our spirits as Earth prepares to come forth from this time of withdrawal into a season filled with light.
 
The winter solstice celebrates the return of hope to our land as our planet experiences the first slow turn toward greater daylight. Soon we will welcome the return of the sun and the coming of springtime. As we do so, let us remember and embrace the positive, enriching aspects of winter's darkness. Pause now to sit in silence in the darkness of this space. Let this space be a safe enclosure of creative gestation for you.

 Joyce Rupp and Macrina Wiederkehr, from The Circle of Life

Starhawk: How Do We Love All the Children?


Amory Lovins says the primary design criteria he uses is the question “How do we love all the children?” Not just our children, not just the ones who look like us or who have resources, not just the human children but the young of birds and salmon and redwood trees. When we love all the children, when that love is truly sacred to us in the sense of being most important, then we have to take action in the world to enact that love. We are called to make the earth a place where all the children can thrive.

Starhawk: Bowing To the Dark


Beware of organizations that proclaim their devotion to the light 
without embracing, bowing to the dark; 
for when they idealize half the world 
they must devalue the rest.

 Starhawk
 

For the Winter Solstice: In the Depth of Winter


In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me 
there lay an invincible summer.

– Albert Camus

Friday, December 19, 2014

Alice Walker: Gratitude


'Thank you' is the best prayer that anyone could say. I say that one a lot. Thank you expresses extreme gratitude, humility, understanding.
 
- Alice Walker
  

Thursday, December 18, 2014

In Honor of Stephen Colbert

Bless Stephen Colbert for his strength and courage, his humor and brilliance, his wit and wisdom, his commitment to truth and passionate caring for us all. What a gift he has been for all who tuned in  and were able to listen and be moved and changed by the experience. I have such gratitude to those who are able to create ripples that make an incredible difference. Stephen Colbert is certainly among them. Peace ~ Molly

 
Don’t be afraid to be a fool. Remember, you cannot be both young and wise. Young people who pretend to be wise to the ways of the world are mostly just cynics. Cynicism masquerades as wisdom, but it is the farthest thing from it. Because cynics don’t learn anything. Because cynicism is a self-imposed blindness, a rejection of the world because we are afraid it will hurt us or disappoint us. Cynics always say no. But saying yes begins things. Saying yes is how things grow. Saying yes leads to knowledge. “Yes” is for young people. So for as long as you have the strength to, say yes.

- Stephen Colbert


 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Vandana Shiva: Fearlessness and Joy


How do I do it?

Well, it's always a mystery, because you don't know why you get depleted or recharged. But this much I know. I do not allow myself to be overcome by hopelessness, no matter how tough the situation. I believe that if you just do your little bit without thinking of the bigness of what you stand against, if you turn to the enlargement of your own capacities, just that itself creates new potential. And I've learned from the Bhagavad-Gita and other teachings of our culture to detach myself from the results of what I do, because those are not in my hands. The context is not in your control, but your commitment is yours to make, and you can make the deepest commitment with a total detachment about where it will take you. You want it to lead to a better world, and you shape your actions and take full responsibility for them, but then you have detachment. And that combination of deep passion and deep detachment allows me to take on the next challenge, because I don't cripple myself, I don't tie myself in knots. I function like a free being. I think getting that freedom is a social duty because I think we owe it to each not to burden each other with prescription and demands. I think what we owe each other is a celebration of life and to replace fear and hopelessness with fearlessness and joy.


Purple Water Lily Metal Print by Elizabeth Budd

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Satish Kumar: Spiritual Consciousness


We live under the power of Modern Consciousness, which means that we are obsessed with progress. Wherever you are is not good enough. We always want to achieve something, rather than experience something. The opposite of this is Spiritual Consciousness. By that I mean you find enchantment in every action you do, rather in just the results of your action. Spiritual Consciousness is not a particular religion but a way of being.