When I fell into retirement eight years ago (age 58), I didn’t know that it was happening. I thought I was taking some time off to finish some schooling and then begin a new career. The time from then to now has been a bit of a ramble: fits and starts, exploration and insploration, all of it interesting, some of it hard, all of it …transformative.
If, or when, I thought about retirement at all, it was first a desire to escape the corporate madness and then to go more slooowwwwwly.
Now I find there are not enough hours in the day for all I’m drawn to do. Sometimes I follow where my impulses lead me; sometimes I stick to the game plan. And now I’m coming to like both, judge neither, and be wherever I am in the moment.
This morning, I was wandering some blogs I read regularly and came across this post at Synch-ro-ni-zing that made me think. Ruth often does. She doesn’t know me yet, because I’ve been lurking there and haven’t commented yet. She mentioned another blog post that I fully intended to go read…but when I found a comment from the writer in question I was compelled to click over to her post immediately. Lovely You writes at The Good In You. So now I’m lurking in the background of two blogs fairly new to me and find that I am now compelled to work on some thoughts I’ve been having for awhile now…
First: Thanks Ruth and Lovely You for today’s inspiration; for the crystal clarity of your written words; and for the beauty of those parts you allow us to see.
So, on to the game of What If.
My journey has brought me to this place today where I
consider that All Is Well. I consider that the thought might be actually and
The trail to that conclusion goes something like this:
· What if there really is only one god? An energy that pervades and is all, and is in me, too? (and in you, and in that rock, and in weather, etc…)?
· What if God is good – only good? And those things that look bad to me are only indications of a separation from that energy – and not really real, since god is everything and All is Well?
· What if the circumstances a/o events in the world that seem not good, are only illusions manifested as contrast so that I can learn from them about how to stay connected to the only one good god?
· What if it is true that thoughts and words and focus have energy of their own?
· What if those things to which I give my attention get bigger or more intense?
· What if I can change my personal world by where, how, and upon what I focus my attention and my intention?
· What if the collective we can change the entire physical world by where, how, and upon what we focus our attention and our intention?
And here are a few observations about the world ‘as it is’.
We are being fed a completely disproportionate amount of bad news thru various media: TV news and pharmaceutical and insurance ads, preachers, peers, etc. Where are the stories of the everyday lives and loves of US? We are being led strongly into fear by these same groups who want to sell us things, or save us; who want us to feel powerless to change anything without relying on them or their products.
In my little world, my own experimentation has proven to me that I can affect the quality of my life by shifting my focus to the positive; and by seeing all people and things and circumstances as they really exist in the mind of god - as perfect.
By creating and holding this vision, I do transform myself and my environment. It seems a clear and compelling vision that can, and does, really impact the whole planet. And to see the world ‘as it is’ in the news, for example, is to add to the energy that maintains the suffering we think is real.
For example: (and I wouldn’t, in other circumstance than
this blog, even bring up this subject)
The Gulf oil spill. I am not able to go there and walk the beaches and actually make physical changes in what is happening there. Nor do I have the energy to stay here and collect hair or hay and send it for the reclamation efforts.
For me to then hold it in my mind, and brood on it, or see it as disaster, or feel grief, or lament out loud about the whys and wherefores only serves to feed more energy into the thing itself. To listen to the countless hours of such lamenting on ‘news’ programs does the same thing.
I think it is my purpose to see a bigger picture: to see a planet that has taken care of itself for millennia, and will survive and thrive. I think I must watch my words and my mind and heart to transform all of them to positive loving things that uplift. To be sad or angry about things I am totally unable to affect is to add energy to them and does not transform;
There is a phrase in one of the comments, “My heart is now likely to break, from fullness though, not from sadness.”; and I would suggest that just changing from ‘likely to break’ to ‘overflowing with’ might transform the hearts involved, including mine.
I’m new (in some ways) to thoughts like these. I’m sure they will evolve as I continue to explore. And the evidence in my own life suggests that I’m on the right track – at least for me – at least for now.
I found this poem in the sidebar
of Ruth’s blog:
THE PEACE OF WILD THINGS
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
— Wendell Berry