Saturday, September 30, 2017

Another Challenging Quote

     Here's another quote to challenge us to act in these challenging times:

     "The question is whether or not you choose to disturb the world around you, or if you choose to let it go on as if you had never arrived."  From Ann Patchett, a writer.

     Let's work for a better world.

(illustration courtesy of

Saturday, September 23, 2017

A Challenge for Us All

Here's a quote which speaks to us all:

     "We must dissent from the fear, the hatred, and the mistrust.  We must dissent from a nation that buried its head in the sand waiting in vain for the needs of its poor, its elderly, and its sick to disappear and just blow away.  We must dissent from a government that has left its young without jobs, education, or hope.  We must dissent from the poverty of vision and timeless absence of moral leadership.  We must dissent, because America [or any country] can do better, because America [or any country] has no choice but to do better."  From Thurgood Marshall, U.S. Supreme Court Justice (1908-1993).

     Certainly has relevance for our times, doesn't it?

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Some Insights into Rumi, Part 2

     Last week we were discussing how Rumi, the 13th century Persian mystic, found in Twin Soul in Shams of Tabriz, but later had similar spiritual companionship in two others.  How can a person have more than one Twin Soul?
     I believe that Shams was indeed Rumi's Twin Soul, and in that profound awakening, he discovered the union we all have with the One, whom he called the Friend.  Once that happened, Rumi's soul opened up and he recognized that we are all part of the One as drops of water are all a part of the sea.

     I think that Salah and Husam, Rumi's later spiritual companions after Shams' death, embodied that recognition and he celebrated that in his later poetry.

     Perhaps that is the purpose of any true Twin Soul relationship: to awaken us to our soul's connection not only with our other half, but to the divine and indeed to all in the All.  Enjoy this:

     "If you are me and I am you,
      What is this separation between you and me?
      We are the light of God, we are God's mirror.
      So why do we struggle with ourselves and with one another?"

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Some Insights on Rumi

     If you have been following this blog for very long, you know that I am a huge fan of the 13th century mystic, Rumi.  His poetry fills me like cool water on a hot day.

     It was in Rumi's poetry that I found the Twin Soul concept spelled out in beautiful language.  For example:

     "More and more awake, getting up at night,
      spinning and falling with love for Shams."


     "When union happens, my speech goes inward,
      toward Shams.  At that meeting
      the secrets of language are no longer secret."


     "Why should I seek?  I am the same as
      He.  His essence speaks through me.
      I have been looking for myself!"

     But I've long been curious as to why, after finding his Twin Soul in Shams of Tabriz, Rumi later talks about two other companions in similar language.  After the death of Shams, he found a new companion in the goldsmith Salah, and after Salah's death, his companion became Husam, who was his student and scribe.  Here is a poem fragment about Husam:

     "Husam, when my spirit completely recognizes yours,
      they recall our being one."

     Is it possible to have more than one Twin Soul?  Or did Rumi discover another spiritual truth?

     More on that next week.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

An Oldie But Goodie

     Once in a while it's good to visit an old friend and see with new eyes what attracted you in the first place.  So it is with Michael Garrett's Walking on the Wind: Cherokee Teachings for Harmony and Balance.  I pulled it off the shelf a little while ago and enjoyed walking with the author for a while.  Ancient wisdom bears repeating.

     Garrett is from the Easter Band of Cherokees.  His father was inducted into the knowledge of using plants for healing, and passed on the reverence for the natural world to his son.  The book reveals that with every page.  It reminded me again how very disassociated our society is from the natural world from which we came.  Do I consider the plants that I tread on?  Do I thank the plants and animals and minerals which provide me with food, healing, or shelter?  Do I live in a state of awareness of my natural surroundings and in deep gratitude for what I receive?  This book instills the importance of those virtues.  A wonderful read.