Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Monday, March 30, 2015
As we come to the close of this month' focus on being present, we would like to know. What blog or thought for the day have you found most helpful in practicing being present or being in the presence of the Divine?
Sunday, March 29, 2015
I have been sitting here the last few days thinking about a question somebody asked me about what my spiritual rituals are like. What do I do to stay connected, focused, and balanced? As I have been thinking about this, I realized there were multiple ways for me to answer this question. On the one hand, you are one of the first things I think about every morning. I get up, go to the bathroom, and come to the computer, think about our theme for the month and post a thought to give others and myself something to think about. Then I open my gratitude journal and write down five things I am grateful for in my life. Most days I also try to write down why I also appreciate that which I just gave thanks for in my life. Then I write one thing that is inspiring me each day. Finally, I think about what I want to manifest in my life that day. That is one way for me to talk about what I do to stay connected with you.
However, that is more about what I do, and while it is a part of what keeps me feeling like I am in your presence, there is so much more to it than that.Read More
Saturday, March 28, 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
For the last few years I have been reflecting on the various things I have learned in and through the kitchen. With the health challenges I have been through in the last few months, I have made significant changes in how I think about food, plan menus, shop for ingredients, and cook. I also realized that I had some kitchen equipment, which needed to be replaced and that there were things I needed that we did not have. A series of events in my life and the lives of people I know led Zoe and I to buying a few new things for our kitchen from Pampered Chef. It is funny because Zoe, who never cooks, loves Pampered Chef products. I have always found it humorous that she who hates to cook, loves going to Pampered Chef parties.Read More
Thursday, March 26, 2015
This week's song of the week reminds us to be in the moment and experience things for ourselves. It is not for others to experience our life, our life is for us to experience. http://inspiritual.biz/inspiritual-song-of-the-week1/
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
A few months back, I remembered reading a story about the importance of being present. It was a column in The Huffington Post by Ian Colvin, where he began with a story of a dialogue between him and his son. It started like this:
"Why were you looking down when I was skating tonight, Daddy?"
"I wasn't looking down, buddy," I answered. "I was watching you."
"But I saw you looking down, too," my son responded. "Why were you looking down?"
"Busted!" my husband laughed.
And I was busted; I had been reading and responding to work emails on my BlackBerry during my son's skating lesson.
Was I proud? No. But I was proud that I had made it home from work on time to take my son to skating; something I hadn't been able to do the week before.
Yet, what's worse, not being there, or not being present in the moment?
Monday, March 23, 2015
Sunday, March 22, 2015
Saturday, March 21, 2015
So today I just want to thank you for the reminder to not run, not that I can physically run anyway (LOL). I was looking for quotes about being present I could use for the thoughts for the day this month, when I stumbled upon this powerful reminder from Geri Larkin in The Still Point Dhammapada. “
Being upright means staying smack dab in the middle of what's going on. No running away. No pretending that the situation is any different than it is. It means breathing in and out and listening to our heart. And asking only one question: What can I do right this minute? Sometimes I think of it as "mountain and river" practice. Detroit is all too often a mountain of heartbreaks and a river of sorrows. All I can do is look for cracks where some help can be offered. Sometimes I can only witness. Some days I can only pick up garbage or make the first call to a shelter or delete the email and chant for the person who wrote it.Read More
Friday, March 20, 2015
Thursday, March 19, 2015
Every morning, as many of you, know I post my thought for the day. However, I also have a few places that send me inspirational messages as well. This morning, my message from God was “you are only as free as you imagine yourself to be. There is nothing "out there" that's holding you down, - you are limiting yourself only with your own imagination. And your greatest limits are not even the "cannot" and the "should not", but the places where your imagination hasn't yet gone at all. There has never been a better time for you to open your eyes, let the imagination soar and see what more is possible.”Read More
There are only 86,400 seconds in a day. So live each one to its fullest. Live each second to its fullest and live like you are dying. That is the theme of this week's song of the week http://inspiritual.biz/inspiritual-song-of-the-week1/
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Spending this month thinking about being present has helped me to not only think about it, but also be in it. It has helped me remember the things I can do in my life to bring calm and peace into my life, especially on those days that are overflowing with things to do and have the potential to be stressful and chaotic. One of the things the writing of Thich Nhat Hanh reminded me of is to “Walk as if you are kissing the Earth with your feet.” That quote reminded me that everywhere I am and go is Holy Ground and every place I am is where I am supposed to be. As Hafiz once wrote, The Place you are right now, God circled on a map for you.” When I remember that where I am is a calm, peaceful, holy place the Ultimate created just for me, I can feel the stress leave my body and the calm fill it. How can one experience anything but that peace which surpasses understanding while standing and walking on Holy Ground.Read More
Monday, March 16, 2015
Sunday, March 15, 2015
Saturday, March 14, 2015
I seriously want to thank you for your sense of humor and for listening to my prayers. If I ever needed to know that you were present, you let me know today. This morning I was thinking carefully about what I wanted my intention to be as this is grading frenzy weekend for midterms. However, I said that I was going to make the time to perform a random act of kindness. So thank you for providing me with the time and the opportunity to extend kindness to someone who was in need.Read More
Friday, March 13, 2015
Thursday, March 12, 2015
For those who were expecting me to say that this week’s blog was inspired by my addiction to Chopped, I have to partially disappoint you. It was not my original source of inspiration. It was actually inspired by the reflection and meditation I have been doing the last few weeks about being present. Last week, I talked about being present while cooking, not just being present with the process, but with the ingredients and taking the time to let them speak to me through all my senses.
Last night, as I was finishing my blog on The Gift of Presence for my Inspiritual Reflection I realized this was why gathering around the kitchen table to share a meal is so important. It is not just a time to eat together. It is a time to be present with each otherRead More
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Sometimes the greatest gift we can give someone is our presence. As I shared in this month’s newsletter, Recently, I came across a story about practicing being present in a book by Sandy Boucher, author of Opening the Lotus: A Woman's Guide to Buddhism. She wrote about the practice of being present from a Buddhist perspective. “The word 'practice' covers everything that Buddhists do in their efforts to achieve clear understanding and benefit other beings... Last week I spoke with a Buddhist friend who had just had a baby. ‘How is it caring for a little girl?' I asked. She replied without hesitation, 'It's twenty-four hours a day of practice.' She was being called upon to pay attention to, and to act with compassionate caring toward this tiny human being constantly throughout day and night. And she was attempting to do it, not by rote but, with full presence of mind and spirit. This is Buddhist practice."Read More
Monday, March 9, 2015
Saturday, March 7, 2015
Friday, March 6, 2015
Thursday, March 5, 2015
I always love it when my friends call me and tell me they found someone who thinks the same way I do about food and cooking. Recently, this came about in a video someone shared with me about how to cut an onion. What Cynthia Lair, the speaker in this video, discussed was not so much about how to cut an onion, although she physically demonstrates that as well. What she talked about was the importance of being present when you are cooking. Given that this is our theme for this month, I knew I had to write about this.Read More
I am not sure we have ever selected a classical piece for Song of the Week. However, Beethoven's 6th symphony seems to be an exercise in being present. Each movement is a present moment distinct in its sounds, moods, and gifts to the listerner. The composer uses recurring melodic themes to convey the sense of being surrounded by one beautiful impression after another. http://inspiritual.biz/inspiritual-song-of-the-week1/
Wednesday, March 4, 2015
Tuesday, March 3, 2015
When we talk about being present, it sounds easier than it is. It is not that it is difficult, it is that we start off in the present and then begin our time travels as we tell our story. For example, the first question I ask when we begin our love and inspiration gatherings is how are you doing today and/or what are you dealing with today? So often, what happens is someone may begin with what they are dealing with today. However, then we travel into the past to hear the explanation of how the person got into this situation or what they have learned from the past. Sometimes we travel to the future and talk about what the person would like to see happen next or what they would like the outcome to be. I laugh as I write this because I know that there have been times in our gatherings that I have done my own share of time traveling and not being present. I would like to say that I was not as present as I could be, but one is either present or not.Read More