Category Archives: Gilda Radner

Wishcasting Wednesday

from Jamie's post

from Jamie’s post

Today, and for the last time, Jamie asks, “What do you wish for?” It’s taken me all morning to be able to show up here, attempt an answer. I’m sad, for all kinds of reasons, and this is another — Jamie is no longer going to host Wishcasting Wednesday on her site. She’ll offer the practice in other ways, but this version of it is ending. I didn’t expect that, not today, and even though change is inevitable and sometimes even for the best, I’m feeling tender about it.

This season is always rough. There’s not as much light, the days are shorter and colder, the sky is gray and dark more often, everything in nature going to sleep, there are no more flowers or fruits, green has turned to gray and brown. I don’t travel to visit with family (we go in the summer), so my tiny little family is alone for the holidays. I am reminded of everything, everyone we’ve lost, we miss. In the rush to prepare for various celebrations, crowds of people gather but in their hurry they can be so rude, so mean to each other, so unkind. I understand that feeling of overwhelm, of irritation. I’m feeling it myself. There’s so much left to do before tomorrow, before next week, before next month, and sometimes I just want to slow down, to stop, to hibernate, to rest, to forget. It’s a season of letting go and it’s hard.

Don’t get me wrong, I love twinkle lights and pie and warm sweaters and hot apple cider and Christmas music and snow as much as anyone, but there’s also something really sad and lonely about this time of year when it feels like everything is changing or so far away, over or gone.

I’ve wished with Jamie 68 times, and I’ve wished with other people who were also practicing. I am so grateful to Jamie for continuing to guide us, provide prompts and a place to share, for as long as she did. I wish along with her for open space where new ventures can grow and new adventures can begin.

Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next. ~Gilda Radner

I wish to remember that as Ram Dass said, “we are all just walking each other home.”

I wish for us all to remember that we are fundamentally whole, basically good, inherently wise and compassionate, and wish that we can forgive ourselves and others when the way we act is not in accordance with that truth.

I wish for us to know that every being just wants to be happy and safe, loved, but that we get confused sometimes about how to make that happen.

I wish that we all begin to ask “where do I see suffering?” and do what we can to ease it, in ourselves and in the world.

I wish that we keep our hearts open, to joy and love and suffering, that we meet what arises in the moment, allow it to touch us, and when the time comes, let it go.

Day of Rest

This is what the river looked like just two weeks ago. The water was low and filled with dark ash from last summer’s fires, green algae growing in the stillness, with a spot in the middle where the bottom was completely exposed, the trees at the edge reflecting off the quiet surface.

To see it this morning was a reminder that things change, ebb and flow, always arising and falling away, constantly shifting, beginning and ending.

I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next. Delicious ambiguity. ~Gilda Radner

I woke up this morning in the still dark, two warm dog bodies smashed against mine, and I started to worry. I was thinking about all the things I needed to do today, all the things that needed done this summer, all the work and the projects and the play I keep trying to stuff into every minute of every day and how there is just never enough time.

sixpacks

Later on my walk with Dexter, feeling sad about his eventual death, wishing again that it’s easy for him, still anxious about having so little time, I realize three things, Three Truths coming to me a few days early.

1. Truth: That’s really all we ever want for anyone in the end, (including ourselves), for death to be easy.

2. Truth: Dexter carries no sadness about his own death, if he even thinks of it, has any awareness of it at all.

3. Truth: In every way that I am stuck, struggling, not free, I am my biggest obstacle.

Perhaps the biggest tragedy of our lives is that freedom is possible, yet we can pass our years trapped in the same old patterns…We may want to love other people without holding back, to feel authentic, to breathe in the beauty around us, to dance and sing. Yet each day we listen to inner voices that keep our life small. ~Tara Brach

As I was walking, I was noticing shadow and light, the wabi-sabiness of the world, of life. Wabi-Sabi is a concept I’m a bit obsessed with right now. Essentially it is acceptance of that which is impermanent, imperfect, and incomplete, and beyond acceptance, being able to see it clearly, to understand it as beautiful, to love it even. This is the reality of our lives if we are brave enough to open our hearts to it.

This stump is wabi-sabi. It is what remains of a tree no longer alive in the way we understand that particular animation, and yet it is surrounded by life, anchored in it, present with it. In this sense, what does death even mean? Where do we begin, where and when do we truly end? If we are made of love, come from love, live surrounded by and imbedded in love, can we ever really be separated? Aren’t we always completely and utterly free?

I’d like to think so. My wish is to believe that, to trust it, to accept it — all of it, with open eyes of full awareness and an open heart full of compassion.

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
and rightdoing there is a field.
I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass
the world is too full to talk about.
~Rumi