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Posts Tagged ‘Inner-peace’

#IamYouAre (more…)

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“The beginning of love is the will to let those we love be perfectly themselves, the resolution not to twist them to fit our own image. If in loving them we do not love what they are, but only their potential likeness to ourselves, then we do not love them: we only love the reflection of ourselves we find in them”
Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island

“What Price Trust, Respect and Communication?”

It may sound like a ridiculous question, and in some ways it could be said to be a question that is automatically answered and therefore a waste of time. After all, if you have a “significant other” in your life, then you presume that trust is one of the most important things in your relationship. It is an integral part of everything you do. Or have I misread the fine print somewhere?

I know this is something I have asked myself before, probably more than once, and therefore the answer should be in front of me. Yet, I am continually reminded by others, that life is not always so straightforward. People are seldom one-dimensional, and as far as language is concerned, what something means to one person, means something entirely different to another.

So how can we ensure that what we say and do is clearly understood by someone else? It’s really Communication 101, with a dash of Trust 201, and also Respect 301. Sounds funny doesn’t it, yet also self-evident, don’t you think?

I’ve spent my entire life working on the principle that, what I say I can be held to, at any time. I’m reminded of the film and series “Fifty Shades of Grey”. For many life is like that. (No, I haven’t seen it, but I’ve heard so much about it.) If someone can find a grey area, that wiggle room, they will exploit what they say to get round the finer points of the truth. Yet to me, the truth is all important. It is a foundation block for all life.

#trustrespectcommunication

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“Friendship- my definition- is built on two things. Respect and trust. Both elements have to be there. And it has to be mutual. You can have respect for someone, but if you don’t have trust, the friendship will crumble.”
Stieg Larsson, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Think for one moment about the misunderstanding, the hurt, the pain and the betrayal, felt by individuals and you begin to realise the importance of truth and trust. You can also add ‘countries’ in this equation, as the furore over the perceived intention on someone’s words has seen entire continents go to war.

Perhaps I am the one “at fault” here. Perhaps I am too black and white, the one who cannot see the middle ground in a situation?

Yet, I’m always reminded of the old Western films, John Wayne, Henry Ford and Paul Newman; even Robert Duvall and Kevin Costner in “Open Range”. They always depicted people of strong character who were willing to die for the truth, the right, and to protect those weaker than themselves. Idealistic isn’t it?

Yet there are times when idealism is what we need to return to, in order to get our country, our world, and our relationships, out of the mire and into the clear skies once more. Are we not meant to be “smelling the roses” each day, “paying it forward”, remembering “kindness, gratitude and appreciation?” I’m surely not the only one who has become lost along the way? I should ask if I have become lost along the way.

#trustrespectcommunication

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“If we can just let go and trust that things will work out they way they’re supposed to, without trying to control the outcome, then we can begin to enjoy the moment more fully. The joy of the freedom it brings becomes more pleasurable than the experience itself.”
Goldie Hawn

There was a time when I believed that family was everything, the glue which held all of us together. These were the people who, no matter what happened, you could rely on to “have your back” and help you, come what may. Yes, another idealistic outlook, but there has to be a start somewhere and if not with family, then where?

We cannot talk to each other any longer because everyone seems to feel the need to ensure they are “one better’ than you are. It makes them feel so much more satisfied if they can “blame you” for saying or doing something, even if they have no idea what actually happened. It makes me feel saddened at the loss of that family bond. I know my parents would be more than disappointed.

These simple “codes of life” apply across the spectrum, from the individual relationships, friendships to the dynamics of country interaction.

#trustrespectcommunication

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“We’re paying the highest tribute you can pay a man. We trust him to do right. It’s that simple.”
Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

In the end, I feel, we have to build trust and respect through communication. It is essential we do this if we wish to survive and bring the world forward into a better place than it is presently. Is this not the meaning of our journey here on earth?

If I say, I will tell you the story of my life, so that you can learn from it, avoid the pitfalls which brought me low, then I must follow through with that promise. I cannot decide to change my offer after I have begun, because I think I can “make more money from it” by selling it to someone else. I cannot say, I will make this promise with you, yet if another country offers me more, then I will forget our arrangement and go with the new offer.

We have to respect our own words first and foremost so that others know they can trust us. They can believe in our words because we have shown them our word is important. It was one of the founding blocks of society when we began forming societies. Respect and Trust in our Communication with ourselves and with others. I don’t believe things have changed much at all. If only everyone else understood those three little words…. We could avoid so much hurt and pain, so much bloodshed. Understanding could be second nature.

So many clichés and yet they are all true. My you find your Truth and Respect for yourself and your fellow spirit along life’s journey and learn the dance of communication to bring us closer together.

#trustrespectcommunication

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“Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.”
Stephen R. Covey

 

May all our days be filled with understanding so that we can trust one another from a place of respect. Let us then communicate from our hearts.

 

Blessings,  Susan ♥

© Susan Jamieson, August 2014

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“Life is not meant to be easy, my child; but take courage — it can be delightful.”

George Bernard Shaw from his book “Back to Methuselah.”

 

Life is complex. It is rarely straight forward. Each time we look around we find that things have been either subtly changed or intricately woven into a complex tapestry. Is it strange therefore to begin to wonder the reason for this apparent random upheaval of life? Life is a character building exercise and a spiritual means of growth and learning.

Former Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Fraser, (1975 – 1983) coined the phrase “Life wasn’t meant to be easy” in 1983. Using only the first line made it sound somewhat unsympathetic, perhaps in keeping with the persona of Mr Fraser. As far as it goes, this simple statement is infuriating. Think about it for a moment. Such a simple statement of apparent fact says so much more. Each day we are faced with a multitude if decisions and situations which we have to solve in order to progress through our days.

If we accept the premise this simple statement provides we are accepting that, irrespective of what we do, life is going to be difficult. It has cemented into our sub conscious the probability that we have to fail at what we are doing, or if not fail, then we will have a really difficult time in achieving our goal. We “have” to struggle.

 

“We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.” -Thornton Wilder

All of life, from its inception to its last hurrah, can be filled with challenges of one kind or another. This isn’t simply aimed at an individual or a select group of people either. It can also include each and every country on the planet. Can you envision what could happen if each country developed a mindset that “Life wasn’t meant to be easy?”

We see on a daily basis the armed conflicts on a global scale, the individual and group murders, brutal assaults and acts of cruelty and terror on a major and minor scale, and if we accept the premise of this simple statement, it could be the single, most heinous excuse for every unimaginable horror which could be perpetrated.

Yet, it need not be this way. “Life wasn’t meant to be easy” because “Life is easy”. As Shaw said, but take courage — it can be delightful.” I can hear the sounds of derision even now. There is no-one breathing down our necks to make life difficult. There is no-one telling us we have to make decisions which will ensure life be will be a struggle day by day. It is true that there are horrendous events occurring each day. There are people dying as you read this, some in the most sickening manner which could be imagined. Does it have to be this way?

Do people have to be forced to live on the streets, to spend days and nights with little or no food or warmth? Do entire countries or factions need to spend their days and nights contemplating the destruction of anyone who has different ideas to theirs?

#This is Life

you are always in my heart

“You connect yourself to the viewer by sharing something that is inside of you that connects with something inside of him. All you have as your guide is that you know what moves you.” -Steven Brust

These questions can reduced to an even simpler, single question, “Does this person, or these people, these countries or factions, have the right or necessity to destroy anyone’s life? We all have an unassailable right to life, to make our own decisions and choose whether we will have a life of struggle, strife and woe or a life filled with blessings, light and ease.

It can most definitely be challenging and so it should be. Anything which we find too easy to obtain or secure, to earn or to simply be, is rarely valued. It seems that we need to feel that we have earned our right to have a sense of ease in our lives. In this, there may be some truth.

As a spirit in human form we choose what lessons we have come to this place, our home, planet earth, to learn and also how we are going to do this. There are many reasons why these lessons may be so ‘hard’. There is one school of thought which says that the harder the lesson the more we learn from it and the less time we have to spend earning our “credits” in the school of life. I’m not entirely convinced it can be as simple as this, but it does make a certain skewed logic.

Perhaps I need to have a logical reason for why things happen the way they do. The shooting down of a plane of innocent travellers. The continued conflicts around the globe which create arguments on a daily basis – the beginnings of the next conflagration.

I don’t have the answers to even the simple question of “Why is life not meant to be easy?” All I have is the sometimes tremulous belief that life is….life. In all its good and bad, the beauty and horror, it is as it is. Whether it is meant to be or not starts to become meaningless.

As George Bernard Shaw said, “Life is not meant to be easy, my child; but take courage — it can be delightful.”

Yes, amidst the horror, “life can be delightful”. I’m happy with that.

May all your days be delightful.

#This is Life

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“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” -Elizabeth Kubler Ross

 

Blessings, Susan ♥

© Susan Jamieson, August 2014

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#In this Wonderful Life

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“When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You know that your name is safe in their mouth.”
Jess C. Scott, The Intern

 In this wonderful life, this often difficult to understand existence we share with the world around us and all its inhabitants, we can be forgiven for wondering what is wonderful about it. It can drive us to distraction and also to the heights of ecstasy, all within the space of moments. It can make us question our reason for being, our reason to stay, and our reason for the apparently innumerable atrocities we are bombarded with daily.

I rarely watch the news broadcasts, the innumerable advertisements, radio broadcasts or read the newspapers. Good news is hard to find in any of these places and the horrors are far too many to count. It is difficult to find the “milk of human kindness” whilst being deluged with the nightmarish ability of some people to perpetuate abominable acts.

Yet, even accepting all of this, I still feel, still believe, that this life is wonderful. We have been gifted with an abundance of beauty, of goodness, kindness and the opportunity to share our happiness, gratitude and kindness with our fellow Spirits, our fellow travellers on life’s road. We have the choice, should we decide to do so, to make a difference in our world, even if it is only in a small way. Even the small acts of kindness and gratitude add up and make a significant difference to others and to our world. Without these simple acts of goodness we would surely be in a dark place.

 

#In this Wonderful Life

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“I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.
Delicious Ambiguity.”
Gilda Radner

 

I see the struggle some people have to endure, the hardships and terrors, homelessness and cruelty and I know that our small acts of consideration are immeasurably worthwhile. The “Thank You” to a waiter or shop assistant for serving us with a smile, helping us to find something we want and in doing so, making our day better. They deserve the same acknowledgement. It makes my heart light to return a smile, a “Thank You” and more, to let their superior know that they’ve done a good job. It takes but a small moment and can mean so much.

We can have no idea what is happening in their lives – the hardships or losses which might be lightened, even slightly, by a kind word or gesture. I remember one sad-looking lady, going about her job in the coffee shop, smiling in all the right places, going out of her way to help by bringing someone an extra jug of milk with a smile. A smile tinged with sadness – hiding the loss of someone dear. A gentle touch on her wrist, a connection between our eyes as I thanked her for her kindness and for just a moment, I saw that dark cloud lift, just a little. Letting her boss know how good the service was and seeing her smile again – worth so much to know I may have made a small difference for just a moment. Who knows how important such a moment may be?

These small acts of kindness, or “Random Acts of Kindness” as they have become known, are often as precious as gold or silver. They spread ripples out into the world, growing ever larger and with unknown consequences. I have even heard a story about how one small act of kindness stopped someone from taking their life. They later said it was this small thing which made them decide they would keep trying and then they helped someone else and they found the strength to keep going.

 

#In this Wonderful Life
image courtesy of flickerhivemind.net   Wonderful Life in Nature
“To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.”
Arundhati Roy, The Cost of Living
#In this Wonderful Life

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We have all seen or heard of the film “Pay it Forward”. A beautiful film which has immortalised on-screen this effect of doing small acts of kindness and how it can grow beyond anything we may imagine. Yet, it is only one side of the coin. We can be selfish, self-centred and consumed by our own wants, ignoring everyone and everything else.

If you watch the daily news, read the daily papers, even the internet, you can be inundated with the horror stories which can destroy any chance of peace of mind. Occasionally it is impossible to ignore the stories of cruelty perpetuated by other people. Children beaten so badly, like a young toddler today that he could not be saved. We can be brought down by these stories, these acts of barbarism to such an extent that we can find no answer to the question of “Why?” Why do these things happen to innocents before they’ve had a chance to explore this wonderful life?

 

#In this Wonderful Life

image courtesy of 1hdwallpapers.com  Magic is all around us – always.

“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

If this question is asked there is usually someone who will say they were angels, not meant to stay here on earth. Yet I find little comfort in this. Even accepting the premise that they chose this life, however brief it was, cannot lift the weight on our hearts at their pain and suffering.

Bad things happen because, at present, good people do not do enough to create enough ripples of kindness to prevent bad things happening. It is a wonderful life. It is filled with wonder and joy, happiness and kindness. We can and do make a difference if we chose to. We don’t need coaching to do this because we already know what to do. Being kind, grateful, generous, are already a part of us. We have to make a conscious choice to follow those beautiful parts of ourselves and we can effect wonderful change around us.

#In this Wonderful Life

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When was the last time you smiled at a stranger, or dropped spare change into a buskers cap? When did you last smile at your waitress and genuinely thank her for serving you, thanking her for looking after your needs? When did you thank the lady at the checkout, the baker in the bakery, the butcher for selecting a beautiful cut of meat from the local farm or the stall holder who was selling fresh home-grown vegetables for you to enjoy? There are so many ways we can all make this world a wonderful place, our daily lives a “Wonderful Life”.

 

#In this Wonderful Life

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“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.”
Louise Erdrich, The Painted Drum LP
#In this Wonderful Life

image courtesy of theoldrectorydonard.com

 

So I would ask you – remember to be Mindful, be in the moment, stop to consider how you think and act and remember that one small act of kindness or generosity can indeed be the small seed to save a life or even save the world. In this Wonderful Life we can make magic happen.

 

Blessings, Susan♥

© Susan Jamieson 31 July 2014

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#Realms of Forever

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Gazing dreamily into the bright blue sky

Watching the powder puff clouds roll by

Catching the gaze of the hovering butterfly

Drifting lazily yet not passing by

Hovering daintily near my nose

Making my eyes cross, just so

Fragile legs just tickling softly

Lacy wings beating slowly

Making the smallest puff of air move gently

Across my star-crossed gaze

Captured in this magic

Of a moment of stolen grace

Peace and contentment supreme

As I lay in my daffodil embrace

Surrounded by nature’s beauty

The serenity I seek enfolds me

As I see myself upon my butterfly

Or into a fairy transformed

Soaring way across the meadow

Into a land of gentle spirits

Where pain and loss never enters

Loved ones are gathered around

Greetings and love forever found

Tears and sadness banished under the mound

Is this what memories are made of

Then I’ll take my share with pleasure

To share with my loved ones in full measure

Til my time comes to follow my dreams

Into the realms of forever.

#Realms of Forever

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Blessings, Susan ♥

© Susan Jamieson July 2014

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The steam rose in thick towers

Spiralling towards the ceiling

The delightful scents of rose, jasmine and bergamot

Carried upwards with the spiralling steam

One slender leg reached forward

Gently touching the water

Before easing completely under the surface

Quickly followed by the other

As she stepped fully into the bath

Slipping down under the water

The billowing clouds hiding her from sight

A soft sigh of contentment was heard

From slightly parted lips

Hair piled high upon her head

She laid back upon a thick fluffy towel

Water swirling around her chin

Sent more steam and the pleasant scents

To enfold her head in dreams of perfumed gardens

Eyes closed in contented bliss

She lay enveloped in the warmth

All her cares and worries carried away

In the rising steam

Leaving only peaceful dreams

Of perfumed pleasure

Beneath the talented hands of the masseur

Who had softly kneaded her flesh

Into pliant submission

Released all tension and cares

Until she floated quietly into this room

To soak in solitary peace

The oils, warm water and soaps

Combined to lull her almost to sleep

The quiet presence of the attendant

Broke her reverie

And she rose midst yet more steam

To reach for the huge thick towel

Her dream put aside for a time

Until she returned once more.

Blessings, Susan ♥

© Susan Jamieson 2014

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Searching for a place

To lay my head

Not a mansion

Not a cave

Just a castle of my own

A place to call my home

Room to lay my weary head

A view outside the door

Rolling hills and trees abound

A creek perhaps just burbling by

Perhaps some fruit trees nearby

Just for us and not the bats

Perhaps cows and horses are near

Chickens too would not be too much

Just leave the rooster at home

No early morning crowing here

Just a place to lay my head

And move around under open skies

With room to turn around

Fresh air to breath

The sound of the breeze

Whispering through the trees

The only noise I hear

Except the sounds of wildlife passing by

Or visiting for a while

Peace and quiet reign here

In this place to call my own

Away from the maddening crowd

Where is my castle, where do you hide

Will I find you soon just by my side

Listening

To a heartfelt sigh.

~

Blessings, Susan ♥

© Susan Jamieson 2014

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