Minds Like Crows

Enjoy this re-post from three years ago.

oooOOOooo
magpie nest

“Our minds are like crows.  They pick up everything that glitters, no matter how uncomfortable our nests get with all that metal in them.”  ~ Thomas Merton

I love this analogy. Its part of the human condition to keep picking up thoughts and not letting them go. Adding more and more until we find ourselves overwhelmed.

In yoga there is the term “monkey mind” for a mind that continues to jump from one thought to another. Whether monkeys or crows work for you, take a moment to reflect on how attached to you might be to your thinking.

Do you keep analyzing and adding more thoughts? Or perhaps jump from one to the next? How much are you adding to your mental clutter ?

metal clutter

When we take time to pause and be still, we become aware of our thinking. We realize we are not our thinking. As a witness to our thoughts, we become less attached to them.

With awareness comes detachment and the ability to let our thoughts go.

Don’t add to your inner clutter, find your middle ground.

Missing Out on Your Own Happiness

Wise owl

Thomas Merton reminds me of a wise owl.

“In humility is the greatest freedom. As long as you have to defend the imaginary self that you think is so important, you lose your peace of heart…

As soon as you take yourself seriously and imagine that your virtues are important because they are yours, you become the prisoner of your own vanity, and even your best works will bring and deceive you.

Then, in order to defend yourself, you will begin to see sins and faults in the actions of others. And the more unreasonable importance you attach to yourself, the more you will tend to build up your idea of yourself by condemning other people.”

~ Thomas Merton “New Seeds of Contemplation.”

When we find ourselves caught in the trap of trying to be more virtuous and better than other people, we miss out on our own happiness.

Peace of heart ( love this expression) comes from accepting ourselves just as we are, and being true to our inner nature. It isn’t about how others see us, how impressive we are in the work that we do, or how many people like us on Facebook.

This is a lesson for every adolescent … and every adult who hasn’t gotten over themselves yet.

Love yourself, share your gifts and let the rest go.

Namaste

 

Flight from the Shadow

man running from shadow

Photo from Silas Manhood Photography Ltd http://www.silasmanhood.photoshelter.com

“There was a man who was so disturbed by the sight of his own shadow and so displeased with his own footsteps that he determined to get rid of both. The method he hit upon was to run away from them.

So he got up and ran. But every time he put his foot down there was another step, while his shadow kept up with him without the slightest difficulty.

He attributed his failure to the fact that he was not running fast enough. So he ran faster and faster, without stopping, until he finally dropped dead.

He failed to realize that if he merely stepped into the shade, his shadow would vanish, and if he sat down and stayed still, there would be no more footsteps.”

~ Thomas Merton*

The assumption to go faster and push harder to overcome something is ingrained in so many of us. But does it really work? What would happen if you tried  different approach?…

Of course, you won’t know unless you experience it for yourself.

Today, take time to slow down and consider other possibilities, beyond your habitual thinking. Find your middle ground.

Namaste

*Merton, Thomas. The Way of Chuang Tzu (Second Edition) (p. 155). New Directions. Kindle Edition.

Inspiration – The Work of our Lives

unconditional love

“Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. That is not our business and, in fact, it is nobody’s business. What we are asked to do is to love, and this love itself will render both ourselves and our neighbors worthy.”

~ Thomas Merton

 

Imagine if we could set aside judgment and fear, and we all found our way to love others, and ourselves, unconditionally.

Bring it on.

Make it a practice.

This is the work of our lives.

Namaste

* Tao Inspiration ☯ – The game is never over

wandering monk

There are no fixed limits
Time does not stand still.
Nothing endures,
Nothing is final.

You cannot lay hold
Of the end or the beginning.

He who is wise sees near and far
As the same,
Does not despise the small
Or value the great:
Where all standards differ
How can you compare?
With one glance
He takes in past and present,
Without sorrow for the past
Or impatience with the present.

All is in movement.
He has experience
Of fullness and emptiness.
He does not rejoice in success
Or lament in failure

The game is never over
Birth and death are even
The terms are not final.

~ Thomas Merton

 

The game is never over … when we accept and surrender to it all 💛

 

Merton, Thomas (2010-03-30). The Way of Chuang Tzu (Second Edition) (pp. 85-86). New Directions. Kindle Edition.

* Be a Bold Writer

courageous writer

“If a writer is so cautious he never writes anything that cannot be criticized, he will never write anything that can be read. If  you want to help other people you have got to make up your mind to write things that some men will condemn.”

~ Thomas Merton

This is an alternative version of this morning’s post.

* Wise Words for Cautious Writers

wise fox

“If a writer is so cautious he never writes anything that cannot be criticized, he will never write anything that can be read. If  you want to help other people you have got to make up your mind to write things that some men will condemn.”

~ Thomas Merton

Be bold my friends!