Grateful living

I got the following in the mail today from Brother David Steindl-Rast, OSB and it arrives at a time of transition for me. Summer is turning to autumn. My daughter has returned to college. I’ve returned from a journey that saw me in Illinois and then southern New York and New Jersey.   I visited places I hadn’t been to in over thirty-five years. I spent time with family that I see very sparingly.  I shared in great joy and release.

In thanksgiving for life, I pledge
to overcome the illusion of ENTITLEMENT
by reminding myself that everything is gift
and, thus, to live GRATEFULLY.
In thanksgiving for life, I pledge
to overcome my GREED,
that confuses wants with needs,
by trusting that enough for all our needs is given to us
and to share GENEROUSLY
what i so generously receive.

Life is truly a gift and yet I don’t see it that way often enough. Read more of Brother David’s work here.

Thirty five years

Yesterday was the thirty-fifth anniversary of my father’s death. It’s a day that will always live in my memory. I was serving on active duty in the United States Navy and stationed at the Naval Air Station in Albany, GA. I was working the afternoon shift in the newborn nursery when I was summoned to the executive officer’s suite. He greeted me and told me that he was sorry to have to tell me that my Dad had passed away earlier that day. I cannot remember the XO’s name, but I will always remember his face and the look of genuine concern. Though I had only been stationed in Albany about four months at that point my shipmates took the best of care of me.

Bill Kirkland, one of the dental technicians magnanimously offered the use of his Datsun 240Z for me to make the trip home. I’ve often thought of what a special gesture that was. I’ve completely lost track of all my shipmates in the last thirty years, but I’d like to say thank you to Bill because his gesture stood out from the rest. I don’t even know if he’s still alive, but you really bumped me up that day with that offer.

Happy Birthday Jelaluddin Rumi

Today while visiting Brother David’s website that this is the birthday of Jelaluddin Rumi. Rumi was a mystic and I first learned of him a few years ago watching Dr. Wayne Dyer on Public Television.

The Guest House

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.

Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

— Jelaluddin Rumi,