'Let the beauty we love we be what we do'
Returning to our core in a struggling world
Some weeks, it feels the world is full of distractions—and it’s a challenge to take time to return to the quiet space inside of me, the space of connection and creativity, the place that I tap into when I write to you; that quiet, yearning well inside of me that I think of as my soul.
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Some weeks, the pain in the world seems so large and heavy it’s hard to trod through. Witnessing the unimaginable suffering of the people in Turkey and Syria; the trauma of the faculty and students at Michigan State; the ongoing nightmare that the mother of Tyre Nichols and her family face.
Each of us arrives to the day with our own personal challenges, our individual griefs and sorrows. We arrive to the day in our process of growth, too, with the openings and frustrations and sometimes anguish that come with healing.
Coming back to the quiet space of my soul, to the place where I can use words to pour out my unconscious and conscious feelings, where I bring my concerns to the page and open up the unexplored shadows that are lurking, that is how I return. It’s powerful medicine—and why I’m excited to share the practice with you here each week.
In our month of Return, I’m offering some of my favorite words in the whole wide world, a poem written by Rumi, the poet and mystic who lived and wrote in the thirteenth century. His words help me on challenging mornings to return to my core and to offer gratitude for the coming day, for simply being alive. For being here, in this moment, in this body, in this beautiful and suffering world.
I hope his words wash over you with ease. Push the button at the top of the page and I’ll read them to you.
Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened. Don’t open the door to the study and begin reading. Take down a musical instrument. Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are a hundred ways to kneel and kiss the ground. — Rumi Writing Practice: Set aside 5-7 minutes for this practice. Write in a journal or open a ‘Journey with The Season’ document where you can return each Sunday. Begin by making a list of ten or more things that are 'the beauty you love.' These could be humans, animals, experiences, kinds of art, relationships, non-physical things. Be expansive. Next, consider the phrase, There are a hundred ways to kneel and kiss the ground. Write about what that idea stirs up for you. What are the ways that you express gratitude for the beauty and gifts in your life? For your existence? What are the barriers to letting yourself do so--consider time, external or internal pressures? Deepening Practice: As you gathered from last week's practice, I'm big on love letters. Why hold back on expressing our love? What do we gain by keeping our love hidden away? Craft a love letter to something on your list of beauty--whether it's a person, experience, or any kind of non-physical thing. If it's a person, you may want to share the love letter or even a part of it. Please share! I love reading your responses, whether you email me at email@example.com or share in the comments below. Thank you for journeying with me.
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If you’re interested in joining my next online expressive writings series Soulful Spring, registration is now open. We'll explore our own transformations in the season of awakening, beauty and rebirth. An amazing community is forming.