“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.”…….Jim Rohn.
It has been a long time since I wrote here. Spring was just getting into its stride. The seeds and buds were bursting into life. The birds were busy, busy, busy; the Dawn Chorus was gathering momentum and that exuberant and extravagant sound waking me up and keeping me company on my morning jaunts with my four-leggged companions was exhilarating and hopeful. The swallows were starting to arrive, exhausted by their journey all the way from Africa. I had heard my first cuckoo, the days were lengthening and the evening chorus as dusk fell was just as rousing, if not more poignant as it faded away into the darkening night sky; I had an atavistic and irresistible urge to be outside!
The bright hopefulness of Spring was replaced by the full and gleaming maturity of Summer and today marks the end of what has been a beautiful and memorable few months of what is definitely my absolute favourite part of the year. As we move into September, the Swallows are preparing for their long journey back to Africa and I can feel the warmth slipping away from me. Although the days are still warm, the sunrise bright, the sunset long and smouldering, the night sky clear and the moon, a luminous white glow, I can’t help but feel that all too familiar feeling of longing as I become more mindful of the darker mornings and that all too familiar feeling of what lies ahead deepens; The long winter that leaves bareness and gloom in its wake and generally affects my mood in a deep mysterious way.
“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” …….John Steinbeck, American Writer
But maybe, just maybe, this year could be different. Perhaps I can find a way to fill my heart with the happy memories of this Spring and Summer and use the feelings they evoke to connect with that Centred place of Wisdom and Harmony within myself to give me the strength to Master the Power of Determination and enable me to effortlessly and purposefully move forward into the cooler, darker months. September is a Pivotal month, heralding the end of Summer and the start of Autumn. It’s a time of endings, but also a time for Rejuvenation. I am going to resolve to enter Autumn with Vigor and Spirit and base each step on my Commitments and Conviction so I can change my attitude towards the murkiness and not allow it to infiltrate my soul.
“To Be Interested in the Changing Seasons is a Happier State of Mind than to be Hopelessly in Love with Spring”…….George Santayana, Philosopher
It’s not an easy thing to do in this world of climate change, inequality, brutal violence, racial, cultural, religious, class oppression and tragic, incomprehensible violence. Right now our world is in the midst of a Catastrophic Tragedy that is the worst refugee crisis since the 2nd world war. The Syrian conflict is in its fifth year and more and more displaced people are dying in their desperate attempts to flee war and persecution. By an error of geography, ethnicity, politics, culture, religion and because I have a British passport, I do not have to fight for my freedom, rights and life. That in itself gives me every reason to change the way I view what I see as a Peaceless World and my place in it.
“ We Cling to our own Point of View as if Everything depended on it. Yet our Opinions have no Permanence; Like Autumn and Winter, they gradually Fade Away”…….Zhuangzi, Philosopher of Ancient China
Life is shaped from the Inside Out; We all have the same Hopes and Dreams and want to be Happy and Loved and to Love in return; I am so exceptionally Lucky that I have and have had the opportunity to follow my Hopes and Dreams, to be Loved and to Love. I need to keep striving to use this Fortune to access the Principles and Tools that I have within me to Thrive and stay Determined to keep making a Difference in whatever way I can. We all have these Truths within us and if our Destiny allows us to use them to effect Positive Change, then there is no excuse for us not to.
“Being Deeply Loved by Someone gives you Strengh, while Loving someone Deeply gives you Courage”…….Lao Tzu, Philosopher and Poet of Ancient China
Wellbeing, Wisdom, Wonder, Giving, Appreciation are ways that we can bring Peace to Our Corner of Our World. Perhaps the essence of life can be summed up in Four Ideas:
Peace is what we all are at the core of our being; Love is what we are all here to do, the connecting energy of relationships and the creative impulse of all life; Authentic Happiness is what arises from within us after we have given selflessly; Empathy, Not Individuality, is actually the Essence of a Life that contributes to a Kind, Compassionate and Civil Society.
By Embracing Our Inner Power and Creating Positive Change; Not allowing ourselves to become Desensitised and Awakening our Consciousness; We can find A Way of Viewing and Engaging with the World that offers Connection, Strength and Purpose. We can cultivate self-motivation and responsibility for our actions which come from a place of Respect for our Planet and its Inhabitants.
Life on earth is powered by a seemingly endless Gift from the Cosmos and we can take Strength from Deeply Stirring and Reassuring examples that give us a glimpse that something else is possible and which can Inspire us.
Inspiration is an Energy we can be open to and a Direction we can move in.
I am slowly beginning to learn to filter positive information from the negative, by not reading or listening to endless tracts of doom and gloom. There is a lot of Positive News and People out there that I am inspired by and I try to concentrate on that, foregrounding all the stuff about solutions, positive energy and organisations and people who are making this world a better place. In the background there is always lurking the abyss of deeply disturbing truths about the state of the world and its people which I can’t ignore, but the more I live in the foreground, the more I can hope and focus on the good and valuable. By focusing on what I can do rather than what I can’t do; Knowing that there is always Hope as long as there are people who care; and surrounding myself with those people…..Perhaps, this year will be the year that I can counteract those feelings of Despair and instead use that Negative Energy and the Presence of those Inspiring People to give me a glimpse that something else is Possible and to Never stop Journeying towards it.
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, it for good people to do nothing”…….
Edmund Burk, Author and Philosopher, 1729 – 1797