Surrender or Succumb

One of the toughest lessons we learn in life is that ‘reality’ doesn’t care what we think or how we feel. Reality is just ‘what is’—the permanent state of ‘isness’. This isn’t a philosophical idea. It is one of those ‘obvious’ aspects of consciousness and existence that is true no matter what we believe, a kind of a priori truth such as ‘all bachelors are unmarried’. This idea about “reality just being what is” is tough to get because we spend most of our lives thinking

read more

Compassion and Growth

By Shae Hadden
Bio

My sister reminded me last night that it’s gardening season. “The next three weeks are for planting,” she said. And that was it. For her, the next three weeks of her work life will be determined by her definition of this part of the growing season. Purchasing young seedlings, transplanting older plants, making last minute preparations of the garden beds, placing vital nutrients around plant roots. Working the soil and planting things.

I was struck by the sweet irony of life.

In
the midst of this season of new beginnings, some of my older women
friends are facing mid-life and end-of-life challenges. Seasons ago,
they ‘planted’ themselves in particular locations, lifestyles and ways
of thinking about things. And now the challenges they face are like
none they have experienced before. In a way, they are being offered
opportunities to let go, to ‘re-plant’ themselves,

read more

Mother

In loving memory of my mother, Ruth Selman (1920-2007), who passed away this morning at 11:20 am.

I am distracted by thoughts of dying, My actions blown away on wasted winds of imagination and thoughts I cannot think or speak.

I celebrate tomorrow and yearn for yesterdays,

The weakness of a restless soul longing for realities unlived and lost forever in the desert of forgotten dreams.

I am longing to disappear in a transcendent moment,

Able to relate in a comforting embrace and forget the lost moments of unexperienced possibilities and unconsummated potential.

I am too many people in too many times,

Filled with the pain of seeking what cannot be sought and hoping for resolution of unasked questions that have no answers.

I have circumnavigated the Universe eight times and seven,

Being both lighthearted and a dark cloud without reason, knowing only that I AM and always will be searching, without sleep or time to rest.

I am movement itself, without form or fashion, direction or goal,

Forever trapped in this prison of time and space, physical without form and spiritual without Being or power beyond myself.

I am beyond mere words—a silence embracing the absence of sound.

Rebirth isn’t possible when we cannot die or find an ending to the process we began so long ago—before we knew the cost of time.

I am Yesterday, Tomorrow and Forever, surrounding both life and death,

Now cannot be me, but it is all there is, and therefore I am not and never was—until someone finds me waiting for them for all eternity. read more

The Promise of Networking

Do you remember when networks of computers first arrived on the scene? Moving information onto the new technological platform decentralized and dispersed information and knowledge, a move that resulted in a significant communications revolution that still has repercussions today. Giving people the ability to access and share what had previously existed only on paper or in the minds of certain individuals not only sped up the rate of transactions, but also freed individuals from a certain amount

read more

Technology & Transformation

We’re all connected—whether we like it or not. We have seen our world through the eyes of astronauts, and there is no going back. Globalization is as much a product of space flights, satellites, air transportation, and the telephone as it is a product of our (relatively recent) capacity to communicate and coordinate our actions at long distances using technology. It really is just one world.

The idea that we are shaped by our tools and practices is not new. We’ve constantly evolved

read more

Building Bridges

I was listening to an interview on CBC’s wonderful Sunday program called "Our World”. They were speaking with Charles Taylor, a 76-year-old Canadian philosopher and political activist who was recently awarded the Templeton Prize to research how spiritual aspirations shape society and politics. In this interview, he came across as one of the most optimistic commentators on the state of the world I’ve heard and he was positive without being unrealistic or naïve.

The essence of his message

read more

Older Americans Month

We’re almost at the end of Older Americans Month. I think it’s a good thing to increase people’s awareness of the contributions of those who might otherwise go unnoticed. But I wonder how many people even knew that was the designation given to the month of May? I confess I didn’t until about a week ago. Older Americans Month (originally Senior Citizens Month until Carter moved to have it renamed in 1980) goes hand in glove with

read more

Silence, Discernment & the Art of Listening III

By Stu Whitley
Bio

This is the third post in a three-part series.

In the 18th century, Sir William Herschel became the first man to discover a planet, Uranus, and six years later, he found two moons to that frozen, unimaginable world. His sister was an eminent astronomer as well, discovering three nebulae and eight comets. His son John, born into a family steeped in brilliance, wrote Treatise on Astronomy in 1833, in which he, like all visionaries, looked to the heavens to illustrate the central point in his work: he warned against misinterpretation and what he called ‘vulgar errors’ arising from imperfect or habitual apprehension. His instruction to men of reason was to try and listen, to see, and to understand the gigantic truths behind the reduced forms of mundane existence, in the same way as a sailor knows but cannot immediately measure the frozen immensity under the iceberg’s cap.

John
Herschel said that a person who would seek to properly understand
should “loosen his hold on all rude and hastily adopted notions, and
must strengthen himself…for the unprejudiced admission of any
conclusion which shall appear to be supported by careful observation
and logical argument, even if it should move of such a nature adverse
to notions he may have previously formed for himself,

read more

Living the Questions

There is a part of each one of us—the dreamer, the romantic, the artist, the creative imagination—that brings forth all possibilities. This part of us never ages, never suffers and is inherently happy, joyous and free.  This core of our being holds our existence in a space of unconditional love of self and another, a space that is both finite and infinite simultaneously. It is the home of feeling whole and completely satisfied.

I enjoyed spending a day with my son today. I was 42 when

read more

Learning Across Generations

We had a wonderful conversation last night with my daughter Lauren (who is graduating from college this week) and two of her friends. The mood was celebratory with lots of speculation about Lauren’s future and so forth. The conversation became focused and very interesting as we began to talk about how her generation uses and participates in the ‘technological space’ of the Internet. Specifically, we ‘older folks’ were wondering why the young seem so intent on putting everything about

read more