Beannacht – A New Year’s Blessing by John O’Donohue

infinity

Beannacht – A New Year Blessing
~ John O’Donohue ~

On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.

And when your eyes
Freeze behind
The grey window
And the ghost of loss
Gets into you,
May a flock of colours,
Indigo, red, green
And azure blue,
Come to awaken in you
A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
In the currach of thought
And a stain of ocean
Blackens beneath you,
May there come across the waters
A path of yellow moonlight
To bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.
____________________________

Beannacht – A New Year Blessing by John O’Donohue

infinity

Beannacht – A New Year Blessing
~ John O’Donohue ~

On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.

And when your eyes
Freeze behind
The grey window
And the ghost of loss
Gets into you,
May a flock of colours,
Indigo, red, green
And azure blue,
Come to awaken in you
A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
In the currach of thought
And a stain of ocean
Blackens beneath you,
May there come across the waters
A path of yellow moonlight
To bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.
____________________________

Thursday Re-View — You Are Enough

You Are Enough

~ Rev. Dr. Kenneth W. Collier ~

_____________________________________________________

You are enough.

You are a beautiful human being.
You have a personality, a humanity, a way of being
that is yours and no one else’s,
and that makes you precious and loved and loveable.

You are enough.

You are something of unique and inestimable value.
Within your own heart there is a sparkling,
twinkling light of worth, dignity, beauty, and love.

You are enough.

You do not need to become someone else.
You do not need to imitate this person or that one,
no matter how famous, talented or privileged
they may happen to be.
You do not need this person’s intelligence or
that person’s talent or another person’s wealth.
And you do not need any other person to become like you.

There is only one thing that you need.

You need yourself.
You need to become yourself.
You need to imitate yourself.
You need to love yourself.

You are enough.

________________________________________________

Thursday Re-View — There’s a Star Inside of Me

starlight

There’s a Star inside of me;
She shines there in my heart
and waits to be recognized.

Darkness tries to scare her off,
ego attempts to ignore her,
busyness pushes her around.
But this wonderful shining Star
keeps twinkling, all aglow.

She waits to lead me
to an unknown meadow
where the truth of who I am
will be revealed to me.

Shining Star, faithful Star,
when will I follow you?
When will I come to the meadow
where the truth will set me free?

~ Joyce Rupp ~
____________________

Thursday Re-View — This I Promise You…

This I Promise You…

For those who are alone, I will sit with you.
For those who have no voice, I will speak for you.
For those who feel invisible, I will see you.
For those who are afraid, I will protect you.
For those who know hunger, I will feed you.
For those who need help, I will offer aid.
For those who suffer emotionally, I will help ease it.

For those who go unheard, I will listen.
For those who mourn, I will comfort you.
For those who know sickness, I will nurture you.
For those who know hate, I will love you.
For those who are dying, I will help you to live.
For those who crave human touch, I will reach out to you.
For those who are blind, I will see for you.
For those in pain, I will bring relief.
For those who cannot walk, I will journey for you.
For those who are lost, I will find you.
For those in despair, I will hold hope for you.
For those who weep, I will dry your tears.
For those with no place called home, I will shelter you.
For those who are wounded, I will bring healing.
For those who wait in darkness, I will be your Light.

This I Promise You…  ~ Theresa

Angel wings V

_______________________________

Earth Charter

We have forgotten who we are,
we have lost our sense of wonder and connectedness,
we have degraded the earth and our fellow creatures,
and we have nowhere else to go.

If we lose the sweetness of the waters,
we lose the life of the land;
if we lose the life of the land,
we lose the majesty of the forest;
if we lose the majesty of the forest,
we lose the purity of the air;
if we lose the purity of the air,
we lose the creatures of the earth,

not just for ourselves,
but for our children,
both now and in the future.

_______________________

Beannacht — A New Year Blessing by John O’Donohue

sunlight

Beannacht – A New Year Blessing
~ John O’Donohue ~

On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.

And when your eyes
Freeze behind
The grey window
And the ghost of loss
Gets into you,
May a flock of colours,
Indigo, red, green
And azure blue,
Come to awaken in you
A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
In the currach of thought
And a stain of ocean
Blackens beneath you,
May there come across the waters
A path of yellow moonlight
To bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.
____________________________

Today’s Quote

new year's eve

A New Year’s Eve Blessing
~ Teo Bishop ~

May you look back on the year,
and feel a sense pride.
May you remember the strength of your character,
the resilience of your spirit,
and the inherent worth of your being.
May you know that you are a part of an ecosystem,
and that your life is sustained
by countless other living things.
May you have gratitude for what has been;
for all that you have lost,
and all you have gained.
May you laugh at your mistakes.
May you forgive yourself, and love yourself.
May you be resolved to be more fully alive in the year to come;
more present in your body, in your mind, and in your heart.
And most of all, may you be blessed with unexpected joys,
undeniable happiness, and unending compassion in the year to come.

___________________________________________

A Winter Blessing

National Geographic

National Geographic

A Winter Blessing
Joyce Rupp & Macrina Wiederkehr

Blessed are you, winter,
dark season of waiting,
you affirm the dark seasons of our lives,
forecasting the weather of waiting in hope.

Blessed are you, winter,
you faithfully guard a life unseen,
calling those who listen deeply
to discover winter rest.

Blessed are you, winter,
frozen and cold on the outside,
within your silent, nurturing womb
you warmly welcome all that longs for renewal.

Blessed are you, winter,
your bleak, barren trees
preach wordless sermons
about emptiness and solitude.

Blessed are you, winter,
you teach us valuable lessons
about waiting in darkness
with hope and trust.

Blessed are you, winter,
season of blood red sunsets
and star-filled, long, dark nights,
faithfully you pour out your beauty.

Blessed are you, winter,
when your tiny snowflakes
flurry through the air,
you awaken our sleeping souls.

Blessed are you, winter,
with your wild and varied moods,
so intent on being yourself,
you refuse to be a people-pleaser.

Blessed are you, winter,
when ice storms crush our hearts and homes,
you call forth the good in us
as we rush to help one another.

Blessed are you, winter,
your inconsistent moods
often herald spring’s arrival,
yet how gracefully you step aside
when her time has come.

______________________________________________

Theresa’s Peace Accord

 I have an idea.

It has to do with blessings of the holiday season.  Strength in numbers.  And the power of the blogging world as a force of nature.

It goes something like this.

I now have 1,240 followers.

1,240 people who actually have agreed to see an e-mail from me every day in what must be already overloaded e-mail accounts.

With views from over 120 different countries. Amazing!

I am grateful, to say the least.

When I first started this blog, I had to take a time-out from work because of health issues, and I wanted to reach out to people from my home, since I was no longer doing it in an office.

My goal was simple – to inspire people, to offer hope, to let them know that they were not alone. To give them the chance to get to know some extraordinary people I’ve met along the way, either through my work, my volunteering, my reading, or my travels. To share a daily quotation that at some point in my life may have spoken to me for a brief moment.

Or comforted me. Or inspired. Or challenged. Or teased. Or humbled.

And guess what? I was inspired.

I don’t know if I achieved my goal for others, but I was certainly inspired by those I’ve met in the blogging world. And the blogging world is simply a microcosm of the real world.

Where else can I speak to or read about or cry with people from other countries and other cultures without ever having met them?

Where else can I view photos (and very, very good ones, at that!) of hills and meadows, festivals and country markets, colorful flowers and exotic animals, mountain peaks and crashing oceans?

Where else can I read about feeding hyenas in Ethiopia or visit a fashion house in Paris or a tiny market on the streets of Pakistan?

Or see the purple flowers against the gray stone of a chapel in Ireland or experience the Northern Lights in Norway or read about the politics of Croatia or the struggle for freedom in Egypt as they happen?

Or get tips on how to take care of elderly pets or teach a cat how to walk on a leash or get a recipe for soup from Singapore or discuss photography with a retiree in Hong Kong or take notes on the latest fashion from a teen-aged Latvian boy?

cat

I’ve offered prayers to people struggling with cancer, sobriety, paralysis, depression and all kinds of loss; exchanged hopeful thoughts in the quiet early morning hours when sleep was elusive; read poetry by young adults in India, Spain and Romania (thank goodness for Google Translate!) who feel the same things as the rest of us, no matter our age or geographic location; read about different faith traditions practiced in so many parts of the world; and shared my own thoughts about people, with people and for people across the globe.

Ask me about how Mumbai’s skyline glitters at night or how the mountains surrounding Islamabad look draped in mist or how the colors of a New Zealand autumn blaze and pop or how the light falls in sacred shadows across an abandoned church in Scotland or how it looks to skydive over Palm Island in Dubai, UAE or how vividly green the terrace farming is in Yemen or how the architecture sings at night in Barcelona.

Or how cheetah hunt or elephants grieve or eagles mate or dolphins swim or butterflies migrate.

Or how people the world over hate war, how they cry for the same reasons, laugh at silly jokes, help those in need, share food and water when they have little, offer hope when others have none, speak volumes without words in their photographs, allow us to visit inside their homes and hearts, show us their children and plans for the future.

We are different; we are the same.

We share stories; we share ourselves.

We reach out; we touch hearts and hands.

We speak in different languages; we speak the same.

We harbor faith not confined by religion.

We believe and we dream.

We inspire and we offer hope.

We are present and never alone.

We are connected.

We are One.

We shall bring peace.

Hands

So, in celebration, I would like to propose “The 1,240 Peace Accord.”

A grass roots movement that starts with the 1,240 loyal followers of this humble blog, Soul Gatherings.

We’ve already shown that we have more in common than different.

We agree – we disagree – – we communicate – we listen – we share – we learn – we care.

Let all of us decide the fate of World Peace.

One person – one post – one follower – one blog – at a time.

We can do this. I can feel it. I can hear our voices, united.

The 1,240 Peace Accord.

Are you in?

________________________________________________

Thursday Re-View — A Prayer by Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Roderick Maclver

Roderick Maclver

Refuse to fall down
If you cannot refuse to fall down,
refuse to stay down.
If you cannot refuse to stay down,
lift your heart toward heaven,
and like a hungry beggar,
ask that it be filled.
You may be pushed down.
You may be kept from rising.
But no one can keep you from lifting your heart
toward heaven
only you.
It is in the middle of misery
that so much becomes clear.
The one who says nothing good
came of this,
is not yet listening.

~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés ~

____________________________

An Autumn Blessing

National Geographic

National Geographic

An Autumn Blessing
Joyce Rupp & Macrina Wiederkehr

Blessed are you, autumn,
chalice of transformation,
you lift a cup of death to our lips
and we taste new life.

Blessed are you, autumn,
season of the heart’s yearning,
you usher us into places of mystery
and, like the leaves, we fall trustingly
into eternal, unseen hands.

Blessed are you, autumn,
with your flair for drama
you call to the poet in our hearts,
“return to the earth, become good soil;
wait for new seeds.”

Blessed are you, autumn,
you turn our faces toward the west.
Prayerfully reflecting on life’s transitory nature
we sense all things moving toward life-giving death.

Blessed are you, autumn,
you draw us away from summer’s hot breath.
As your air becomes frosty and cool
you lead us to inner reflection.

Blessed are you, autumn,
season of so much bounty.
You invite us to imitate your generosity
in giving freely from the goodness of our lives,
holding nothing back.

Blessed are you, autumn,
your harvesting time has come.
as we gather your riches into our barns,
reveal to us our own inner riches
waiting to be harvested.

Blessed are you, autumn,
season of surrender,
you teach us the wisdom of letting go
as you draw us into new ways of living.

Blessed are you, autumn,
season of unpredictability.
You inspire us to be flexible
to learn from our shifting moods.

Blessed are you, autumn,
feast of thanksgiving.
You change our hearts into fountains of gratitude
as we receive your gracious gifts.

__________________________________________________________________

A Blessing For One Who Is Exhausted by John O’Donohue

When the rhythm of the heart becomes hectic,
Time takes on the strain until it breaks;
Then all the unattended stress falls in
On the mind like an endless, increasing weight,

The light in the mind becomes dim.
Things you could take in your stride before
Now become laborsome events of will.

Weariness invades your spirit.
Gravity begins falling inside you,
Dragging down every bone.

The tide you never valued has gone out.
And you are marooned on unsure ground.
Something within you has closed down;
And you cannot push yourself back to life.

You have been forced to enter empty time.
The desire that drove you has relinquished.
There is nothing else to do now but rest
And patiently learn to receive the self
You have forsaken for the race of days.

At first your thinking will darken
And sadness take over like listless weather.
The flow of unwept tears will frighten you.

You have traveled too fast over false ground;
Now your soul has come to take you back.

Take refuge in your senses, open up
To all the small miracles you rushed through.

Become inclined to watch the way of rain
When it falls slow and free.

Imitate the habit of twilight,
Taking time to open the well of color
That fostered the brightness of day.

Draw alongside the silence of stone
Until its calmness can claim you.
Be excessively gentle with yourself.

Stay clear of those vexed in spirit.
Learn to linger around someone of ease
Who feels they have all the time in the world.

Gradually, you will return to yourself,
Having learned a new respect for your heart
And the joy that dwells far within slow time.

~ John O’Donohue, from “Blessings” ~
_______________________________________

Here We Are

Here We Are
by Nancy L. Bieber

Here We Are, Loving One, Creator God
half-awake to this astounding world,
half-awake to our own mysterious lives,
absorbing only drops of this richly layered life.

We want to notice more, to be alive
to who we are within,
to the stories and the dreams,
to the person we have been
and the one we can become.

To know what is real
we are ready to surrender
illusion, that painted comfort
which has been our friend.

We want to see what is true, what is real,
to hold as much as heart and mind can hold
of the world we live in
and whom we can become.

We want to be awake, God, to your opening of paths,
to create and participate
in this shaping of the way.

Here we are, Loving One, ready to begin.

___________________________________

For Belonging

For Belonging
by John O’Donohue

May you listen to your longing to be free.

May the frames of your belonging be generous enough for your dreams.

May you arise each day with a voice of blessing whispering in your heart.

May you find a harmony between your soul and your life.

May the sanctuary of your soul never become haunted.

May you know the eternal longing that lives at the heart of time.

May there be kindness in your gaze when you look within.

May you never place walls between the light and yourself.

May you allow the wild beauty of the invisible world to gather you,
mind you, and embrace you in belonging.

_______________________________________

A Summer Blessing

flowers III

Blessed are you, summer,
season of long days and short nights,
you pour forth light from your golden orb,
energizing the earth and calling forth growth.

Blessed are you summer,
with your generous gift of heat.
Your warm breath animates creation,
encouraging all growing things to stretch toward the sun.

Blessed are you, summer,
you call us into playfulness,
encouraging us to pause from work.
You renew our spirits.

Blessed are you, gracious season of summer,
you surprise us with a variety of gifts from the earth.
We, too, gaze into the earth of ourselves,
beholding gifts waiting to be honored.

Blessed are you, nurturing season of summer,
your fruits and vegetables appear on our tables,
changing them into altars.
Tasting of your life, we are made strong.

Blessed are you, summer,
host of a star that shines with passion.
Sun-soaked, we reach for your energy
that drives us upward and onward.

Blessed are you, sacrament of summer,
nature’s green season, sweet echo of spring.
You speak to us in living color as you renew the earth
with symbols of life for our bodies and souls.

Blessed are you, summer,
season of roots that reach for water.
Even through the cracks in the sidewalk
the song of your seed can be heard.

Blessed are you, summer,
season rooted in reality.
Even as the perspiration collects on our brow,
we experience your earthly joy.

Blessed are you, summer,
and your firefly evenings
you minister to the child in us.
You feed our hunger for beauty.

~ Joyce Rupp ~
~ Macrina Wiederkehr ~

There’s a Star Inside of Me

starlight

There’s a Star inside of me;
She shines there in my heart
and waits to be recognized.

Darkness tries to scare her off,
ego attempts to ignore her,
busyness pushes her around.
But this wonderful shining Star
keeps twinkling, all aglow.

She waits to lead me
to an unknown meadow
where the truth of who I am
will be revealed to me.

Shining Star, faithful Star,
when will I follow you?
When will I come to the meadow
where the truth will set me free?

~ Joyce Rupp ~
____________________

A Spring Blessing

spring 2

A Spring Blessing
Joyce Rupp & Macrina Wiederkehr

Blessed are you, spring,
bright season of life awakening.
You gladden our hearts
with opening buds and returning leaves
as you put on your robes of splendor.

Blessed are you, spring.
In you is a life no death can destroy.
As you exchange places with winter
you harbor no unforgiving spirit
for broken tree limbs and frozen buds.

Blessed are you, spring.
You open the closed buds of our despair
as you journey with us
to the flowering places.

Blessed are you, spring.
You invite us to sing songs
to the frozen regions within
and to bless the lessons of winter
as we become your partner in a new dance.

Blessed are you, spring.
Like Jesus, standing before the tomb of Lazarus,
you call to us: “Remove winter’s stone, come out,
there is life here you have not yet tasted.”

Blessed are you, spring,
free gift of the earth.
Without cost we gaze upon your glory.
You are a gospel of good news
for the poor and rich alike.

Blessed are you, spring.
Your renewing rain showers and cathartic storms
nurture the potential that sleeps in Earth’s heart
and in our earthen hearts.

Blessed are you, spring,
season of resurrection, sacrament of promise.
Like Jesus you rise up out of the darkness,
leaving around you a wake of new life.

Blessed are you, spring,
miracle child of the four seasons.
With your wand of many colors
you work your magic in the corners of our darkness.

Blessed are you, spring,
season of hope and renewal.
Wordless poem about all within us
that can never die.
Each year you amaze us
with the miracle of returning life.

_________________________

A Prayer by Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Roderick Maclver

Roderick Maclver

Refuse to fall down
If you cannot refuse to fall down,
refuse to stay down.
If you cannot refuse to stay down,
lift your heart toward heaven,
and like a hungry beggar,
ask that it be filled.
You may be pushed down.
You may be kept from rising.
But no one can keep you from lifting your heart
toward heaven
only you.
It is in the middle of misery
that so much becomes clear.
The one who says nothing good
came of this,
is not yet listening.

~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés ~

____________________________

Thursday Re-View: “You Are Enough”

You Are Enough

~ Rev. Dr. Kenneth W. Collier ~

_____________________________________________________

You are enough.

You are a beautiful human being.
You have a personality, a humanity, a way of being
that is yours and no one else’s,
and that makes you precious and loved and loveable.

You are enough.

You are something of unique and inestimable value.
Within your own heart there is a sparkling,
twinkling light of worth, dignity, beauty, and love.

You are enough.

You do not need to become someone else.
You do not need to imitate this person or that one,
no matter how famous, talented or privileged
they may happen to be.
You do not need this person’s intelligence or
that person’s talent or another person’s wealth.
And you do not need any other person to become like you.

There is only one thing that you need.

You need yourself.
You need to become yourself.
You need to imitate yourself.
You need to love yourself.

You are enough.

________________________________________________