A friend reached out this a.m. after reading St Therese’s prayer. She has lost both her parents in the last few months. We chatted a bit about grief and asking for strength. She commented she wasn’t sure who she was talking to in her head, but that traditional beliefs did not have a presence in her life right now.
Completely understandable, we don’t feel very spirited in the wilderness.
It got me to thinking…
Faith. Does it matter what you are having faith in, or just that you are choosing to believe?
And which feels better right now– to project hope into a future positive possibility or to fear the worst?
Faith is seeing possibilities, not just problems. (What is a problem solver anyway? I think it’s just someone that believes in possible solutions.)

mud wrestle

“No Mud No Lotus;” my favorite Thich Nhat Hanh quote- posted outside my shower where I have no choice but to consider it for five minutes each day.

The lotus lives a life of regeneration, spanning over many centuries. Found in the thickest darkest deepest still waters, it starts as a stalk with a few leaves and a tiny bud. It grows inch by inch, drawing nourishment from the nutrient and mineral rich water, persevering until it ultimately breaks through the surface and into the light. Its polished and symmetrical petals open one by one without a trace of murky water staining its perfect presentation.

Like all humans, the lotus encounters the pain and suffering of the deep dark conditions into which it was born, but also from which it draws strength. Every night it submerges, and then re-emerges; a true practice of return that goes on for hundreds of years. Exhausting? Or inspiring? I guess it depends on the conditions in which you are currently sitting. Spend some time in the mud and you might appreciate knowing of a natural way out.


The human being follows the earth.
Earth follows heaven.
Heaven follows the Tao.
Tao follows what is natural.

A Meditation from The Tao Te Ching, Chapter 25:

Something mysteriously formed,
Born before heaven and earth.
In the silence and the void,
Standing alone and unchanging,
Ever present and in motion.
Perhaps it is the mother of ten thousand things.
I do not know its name.
Call it Tao.
For lack of a better word, I call it great.

Being great, it flows.
It flows far away.
Having gone far, it returns.

Therefore, “Tao is great;
Heaven is great;
Earth is great;
The human being is also great.”
These are the four great powers of the universe,
And the human being is one of them.

The human being follows the earth.
Earth follows heaven.
Heaven follows the Tao.
Tao follows what is natural.


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