The last few days I've been contemplating gentleness - mostly how to better live it, and Be it.
For me, Gentleness includes lots of delicious things - being intuitive, feminine, being appreciative, being mindful (truly present), walking softly, treating the children with loads of kindness, puttering around the house cleansing it of mental and emotional debris even as I wipe down the fridge.
Yesterday I had a conversation with a close friend regarding abundance and creativity (as in creating one's life). The conversation continued this morning along the lines of gratitude and being appreciative -as in raising the value of life- of the Good Things around us.
Early this morning before the babes were awake I had cleaned a few rooms, and had a minute to sit in my livingroom in utter peace - and to watch the sunlight stream in and set things aglow.
I was appreciative.
I grabbed my laptop, plopped on the couch, and tried my best to capture in a few words my feelings of gratitude for these things - not only for their own sake, but for the sake of honoring the beauty life offers me.
An hour or so later I noticed that my Aunt Kathy had written a new post, "A Charmed Life Indeed". Referencing a short post a couple of days ago that I had written about being appreciative and charmed by little things. She, too, was contemplating things that were bringing comfort, contentment, peace, joy, and ease.
A little while ago as I was fixing my lunch I was pondering what book I wanted to feed my soul with as I ate. Simple Abundance, I thought.
I want to read Simple Abundance.
Remember it, from a hundred years ago?
I've rarely picked it up. Never read the whole thing.
But I wanted it today.
Now lots of folks have their Good Book's. For some it's a bible, for some it's the I Ching, for some it's Tarot cards, or runes, The Tao of Pooh, or the Tao te Ching.
For me, it's all of it. I like to listen for Goodness -Godness- in everything. In whatever I pick up in that moment.
Here, (smiling, now) is what I read today as I opened my book to just any ol' page.
Beauty: Opening Our Eyes to the Beauty That Surrounds Us
While the Simple Abundance path is gentle, its lessons are powerful. First of all, we learn to be grateful no matter what our circumstances may be. In offering gratitude for our real lives, we discover how to change them for the better. As we embrace simplicity, we learn that less is truly more. This freedom encourages us to bring order to our affairs and cultivate harmony in our inner world. Going at our own pace, learning to recognize our limitations, appreciating our progress, we weave the lessons into the fabric of our daily moments until they become a part of us.
Suddenly one day we feel very much alive and desire more beauty in our personal quest. We come to a deep awareness that creating a beautiful life is our highest calling. "It was as if I had worked for years on the wrong side of a tapestry, learning accurately all its lines and figures, yet always missing its color and sheen," the journalist Anna Louise Strong confessed in 1935. We understand her sentiments as life's color and sheen and beauty call to us.
Today, explore ways to see your world differently. Let your eyes drink in the beauty that surrounds you. Walk to a gallery on your lunch hour and meditate upon a beautiful painting, or into your backyard this afternoon to catch that "certain Slant of light" that so enthralled Emily Dickinson. Gaze into the faces of those you love, set the table with care, and relish the preparations you make for dinner, delighting in the presentation of your meal. Light the candles, pour wine or sparkling water in your prettiest goblets, and celebrate this new awareness. It is in the details of life that beauty is revealed, sustained, and nurtured.
Outside, winter's darkness closes in. Inside, you have found your own Light.
Isn't life a beautiful, amazing thing?