Meditating to the Rhythms of the Palms and Opening Our Hearts to those in Need

Every day I sit to meditate, except on those days when I have too much pain or fatigue to do anything but lie down. The practice has brought me great peace, calm and even moments of joy. I highly recommend it. I love to meditate to silence, but this is not always possible, so I find nature sounds or subtle music that doesn’t distract to accompany my sessions.

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Maui Beach

Recently I discovered an album on Amazon Music called Hawaiian Spa and I really enjoy the sounds.

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I haven’t been able to locate a YouTube of any of it online, so I’ll share this Amazon Prime link where you can hear it, or order it for yourself.

And if you can’t access Prime, you can also listen to this instead, with lovely music and calming Hawaiian scenes to enjoy as you relax.

Ahhh.

 

Now, if your stress has melted away and you feel pretty good, here’s a way you can help someone else feel good, too! My dear cousin Paula’s son Brian and daughter-in-law Amber lived in Gatlinburg, Tennessee until a couple of days ago when the massive wildfires there totally destroyed their house. They need so much help, escaping with little more than the clothes on their back and their three kitties. If you can help even a little, here is the link to their GoFundMe page.

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Brian York and Amber Hosea

I and my family thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the generosity of all who pitch in to help Brian and Amber.

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* Steps to Find your Middle Ground

This wonderful, wise and compassionate list resonated with me. So many lists of do’s and don’t’s seem daunting or even shaming. It’s so easy to become overwhelmed with suggestions. This one is amazing! I printed a copy to put up, and I want my own followers to see it as well. I was working with someone recently who is suffering from a painful loss and realized this list might be just the thing to share. See what you think…

Find Your Middle Ground

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This list is for all the list people out there. Enjoy the steps I have discovered in finding my own middle ground and living life in balance 💛

  • Notice! Take time to pause and be aware of the incredible gift of life that you share with others and with nature. Wake up to the little things. Wake up to  your self. Wake up to it all. This is called living mindfully. Become a keen observer.
  • Accept that life has ups and downs. Really! Some one told us when were little that life should be a breeze. This is called wishful thinking. Be grateful for the highs and graceful in the lows. This is called living life well.
  • Become present. Stop lamenting the past or worrying about tomorrow.  Living is in each moment. Now. Take a deep breath.  Then an other.  Notice you are still here… not there.
  • Get to know…

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“A Bandaid for my heart”

My friend and colleague and gifted writer Na’ama Yehuda blogged this sweet interaction with a young client. It touched heart and may well touch yours.

Na'ama Yehuda

She asked me if I knew about dying.

I said I knew it hurt when someone we love died.

She nodded and fiddled with the pencil, poked the tip against her finger, poked again. Again.

I wondered if she was trying to make the hurting take a form she understood through the pinprick of a just-sharpened pencil. I gently put my hand on hers.

She looked up at me, thankfully without embarrassment or worry of judgment. Feelings weren’t easy for this child, whose very early years were filled with much that couldn’t be expressed and had no wording. Her grandfather passed away right before her birth and a hue of grief lingered many months, adding to her mother’s post-partum depression. Her mother has recovered since, and the home was generally caring, but unspoken early patterns of if-you-are-quiet-you-won’t-overwhelm-mom and waiting for another’s space to open so you can have your needs met still played out often. The girl, not yet ten, was more likely to…

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Tears and Till Kingdom Come

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Yesterday was a day of pain and tears. Pain from inflammation in two nerves in my lower back. Pain from seeing the sadness and grief of a family all too accustomed to grief and loss burying their son, brother, father, husband, and uncle well before his three score and ten. He was 46. I began to weep seeing his stoic father, Vice-President Joe Biden walking towards the church behind the hearse with arms around his granddaughter.

image Seeing the family in their grief broke my heart. Most of my readers must know the story of young Joe losing his wife and infant daughter and nearly losing his two sons ages two and three in a car accident when he was just 30 years old. To bury the oldest of his sons has to be one of the most painful experiences anyone can undergo. My physical pain paled, and yet I found it hard to bear, unable to find even a halfway comfortable position.

 

Chris Martin of the group Coldplay, having learned that Beau Biden had liked their music, gave an acoustic rendition of “Til Kngdom Come” that reached into our hearts.

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Here is a video of Coldplay performing “Till Kingdom Come,” with the lyrics, which I found to be stirring, apt and entirely appropriate for this solemn occasion. I heard several reporters say they wept as they listened.

This music is evocative and poignant, the words ambiguous enough to fit any number of painful situations. Another in this genre that is very frank is “O Death” by Ralph Stanley whose haunting a capella performance I featured on this blog in the past.

My back pain is somewhat better today, as I hoped it would be. The Biden family’s pain is in its infancy, to be felt and honored and processed this whole next year, as Father’s Day, birthdays, Thanksgiving and Christmas come without Beau. Eventually next year at this time the corner will be turned, only a little, but turned, and life will begin to open its doors of beauty and joy to the grieving again. Whatever we may believe about an afterlife, it does get better. And yet, we never forget our ancestors and other loved ones who have gone on before us. How can we?

I will end this post with some words of Metta:

May all beings be free from suffering,

May all beings be at ease,

May all beings be happy,

May all beings have peace.

 

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In Memoriam to The Fallen

A beautiful poetic tribute to the fallen and eloquent plea for peace and end to all war. May it be so!

Na'ama Yehuda

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In this evening and upcoming day of Memorial

As Israel remembers its fallen

As parents, siblings, loved ones weep and mourn:

Let it be the last day of new pain

Let there be

Please, oh God

No more war.

Anywhere.

No more dead, no more graves

No more maimed

No more grieving.

Let the bloodshed be ended.

Let the warmongering cease.

Let those who entice pain, find ways of words.

Let those who live hate, open hearts, make new doors.

There’s a way.

No more war.

We’re all people.

All someone’s baby, sibling, loved one, neighbor, friend

We all share more than what can divide us

We all hurt, love, hope, bleed.

No more violence.

There is no need.

Let there be

Hearts that open

Light to hold, hope to share, peace to mold.

Let there be

No more war.

As we weep for the fallen

As we remember what…

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