1. Radio Enso #73: Buddhist teacher and author Susan Piver. “In this in-depth and inspirational conversation, we’ll discuss meditation (what IS meditation?, misconceptions about it, etc.), Buddhism, dharma, The Open Heart Project, and Susan’s life journey from a young girl who was always seeking to her life as a teacher, author, and lifelong spiritual practitioner.”
2. How Change Can Save Your Life, from Positively Present. A really great discussion of change, which is inevitable. And, Mourning Sickness: 6 Steps for Coping with Loss, a beautiful contemplation on a brutal experience, in which she says,
Despite the sadness and pain, the true despair of losing a best friend, there is still beauty in life. The beauty of now doesn’t override from the pain of remembering what was, but it helps. Loss will never be painless, but we have some control over how much we suffer.
3. 10 Trust Habits to Support Your Next Scary Step, from Trust Tending with Kristin Noelle.
4. Marina Abramovic and Ulay.
Marina Abramovic and Ulay started an intense love story in the 70s, performing art out of the van they lived in. When they felt the relationship had run its course, they decided to walk the Great Wall of China, each from one end, meeting for one last big hug in the middle and never seeing each other again.
At her 2010 MoMa retrospective Marina performed ‘The Artist Is Present’ as part of the show, where she shared a minute of silence with each stranger who sat in front of her. Ulay arrived without her knowing and this is what happened.
5. These Aren’t Your Average Snapshots: Bill Gekas’ Portraits of His Daughter as Classic Paintings.
6. The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer, a super interesting TED Talk. And Chuck Wendig’s response on Terrible Minds, The Art of Asking: For Writers and Storytellers.
7. The Art of Reframing Difficult Emotions, on The Freedom Experiment.
8. Losing Your Mind and Finding Your Self, Ed and Deb Shapiro on The Huffington Post.
9. The Young Girl Who’s Best Friends with African Wildlife. A really fun set of pictures.
Born in Africa to French wildlife photographer parents, Tippi Degré had a most unusual childhood. The young girl grew up in the African desert and developed an uncommon bond with many untamed animals including a 28-year old African elephant named Abu, a leopard nicknamed J&B, lion cubs, giraffes, an Ostrich, a mongoose, crocodiles, a baby zebra, a cheetah, giant bullfrogs, and even a snake. Africa was her home for many years and Tippi became friends with the ferocious animals and tribespeople of Namibia. As a young child, the French girl said, “I don’t have friends here. Because I never see children. So the animals are my friends.”
10. Meditation And Mourning: 3 Obstacles to Successful Grieving, by Lodro Rinzler on The Huffington Post.
11. This quote, so important: “The bad news is you’re falling through the air, nothing to hang on to, no parachute. The good news is there’s no ground.” ~Chögyam Trungpa
12. Open Your Heart to Change the World, an older post from Susan Piver, but fundamental.
13. How I Got the Job and Lost Myself, from Liv Lane, (I confess, I sometimes feel this way about my paid work).
14. Ash Beckham at Ignite Boulder 20, a sane argument for not using the word “gay” as a pejorative, for acceptance rather than tolerance of gay people, (I confess, I love and accept gay people).
15. Book Porn: The 30 Best Places To Be If You Love Books, (I confess, I am a bibliophile).
16. Flora Bowley post it notes, oh my, (I confess, I love post it notes).
17. She’s Worth It Fundraising Campaign. A more than worthy cause.
18. Pema Chödrön’s Three Bite Practice.
You can do this anytime you eat a meal. Before taking the first bite, just pause and think of those men and women of wisdom and mentally offer them your food. In this way, you connect with the virtue of devotion.
Before taking the second bite, pause and offer your food to all those who’ve been kind to you. This nurtures the virtues of gratitude and appreciation. The third bite is offered to those who are suffering: all the people and animals who are starving, or being tortured or neglected, without comfort or friends. Think, too, of all of us who suffer from aggression, craving, and indifference. This simple gesture awakens the virtue of compassion.
In this way—by relying on our teachers, our benefactors, and those in need—we gather the virtues of devotion, gratitude, and kindness.
19. When the Universe Has Been Listening All Along, a beautiful post from Christina Rosalie. Also from Christina, 35 Words, “A project with my friend Willow I are doing: 35 Words + an image every day for the year.”
20. The Burning House. I knew about the book, but hadn’t heard of the blog until I read about it on SF Girl by Bay.
21. A quote from Goldie Hawn, “If we can just let go and trust that things will work out the way they’re supposed to, without trying to control the outcome, then we can begin to enjoy the moment more fully. The joy of the freedom it brings becomes more pleasurable than the experience itself,” (I confess, I can’t remember who originally shared this quote).
22. This quote from Barry Magid, (shared by Carry It Forward), “Happiness or enlightenment is not something that takes place in our brains. They are functions of a whole person living a whole life.”
23. And this quote from William Henry Channing, (shared by Patti Digh as a Daily Rock on 37 Days),
To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not, rich; to listen to stars and birds, babes and sages, with open heart; to study hard; to think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions, hurry never; in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common–this is my symphony.
24. Weight Loss and Recovery—Can they Coexist? Is Recovery Even Possible After So Long? I so appreciate Lori’s sane discussions of dis-ordered eating.
25. With Gratitude, Hope Grows, a post about surrendering to the creative process, showing up and allowing what happens, written by Juliette Crane for Your Heart Makes a Difference.
26. Quote from Ram Daas,
The question we need to ask ourselves is whether there is any place we can stand in ourselves, where we can look at all that is happening around us without freaking out, where we can be quiet enough to hear our predicament, and where we can begin to find ways of acting that are at least not contributing to further destabilization.
27. A really good question from Rumi, “Why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide open?” Why, indeed.
28. Keeping the Main Thing the Main Thing, a great post by Rita on This (Sorta) Old Life which shares this quote,
we can’t do it all. but we can all do something… the path is set before us and we only need take a little step each day. soon we will look back and be amazed at how far we’ve come. and we can do it without sacrificing those things that matter most in our life and our heart: the main thing. keep the main thing the main thing. (from Grace Uncommon via Leilani at Tales of a Clyde Woman)
29. This quote from the brilliant Geneen Roth,
When I realized I didn’t have to keep “paying” for my life in pounds of suffering, there was a shift. I realized that living wasn’t about deserving, but allowing. Allowing myself to have what I already had. And each of us has so much all the time…
If, today, you made a commitment to allow yourself to have what you already have instead of constantly having to prove that you are worth it in the many ways we strive to prove ourselves, what would you see? What would you know? Can you allow yourselves to have the safety, the love, the beauty, the breath that you already have? Will you give yourself that much–now?
30. A grieving mom’s advice to the rest of us: Love purely, and take it easy, a beautiful and heartbreaking post from Emily Rapp.
31. This song has been in my head, A Thousand Tiny Pieces, from The Be Good Tanyas.
32. soundtrack to your life | rachel cole, in which Sas Petherick interviews Rachel, (the reason that song has been in my head).
33. When Your Work Life is Destroying Your Good Life, on Be More With Less.
34. This song is also in my head, Ellie Goulding - Dead In The Water (Live At iTunes Festival 2012)
35. Pixar’s 22 Rules of Storytelling.
36. You can’t do any better (but you can feel better), from Marianne Elliott.
37. How Mindfulness Can Help You Discover What You Want to Do in Life, on Tiny Buddha.
38. Lowering Your Standards, a Daily Rock on 37 Days.
39. Minimalism, a post on Smalltopia.
40. Eight years, by Susannah Conway, a post on grief, healing, and tattoos.
41. Daily Happiness: 9 Simple Ways to Find it in Your Life, a post on the Positivity Blog, originally shared on Positively Present.
42. A quote by Lao Tzu, “Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”
43. Approximately 3 Minutes Inside The Head of My 2 Year Old by Jason Good. Funny, and I might be a two year old.
44. Observe These Hands, My Dear. from Guinevere Gets Sober, in which she says,
I watched the dogs chase each other in the snow and heard the robins singing—a sure bellwether of spring—and the happiness welled up a little bit in me because I was right there, just doing the next thing, and it’s those moments I feel no need to change myself, Fix Myself, do anything to myself to make myself different so other people will be OK with me and my actions. Actually it wasn’t happiness, it was just contentment. The opposite of “discontent.”
“Content”—the word comes from the Latin for contain or to hold. In those moments I feel held, safe.
45. This quote from Julia Cameron, “I love to write. Which isn’t to say that it’s always easy.” Amen.