Peace


 

 

joyful song

joyful song

Peace

Quiet yourself.

Reach out with your

mind’s skillful hand

Let it go inside of me

and touch

God.

Don’t be shy, dear.

Every aspect of Light

we are meant to know.

The calm hand holds

more

than baskets of goods

from the market.

The calm soul knows

more

than anything this

world

can offer from here

beautiful

womb

–By St. John of the Cross, taken from Love Poems from God: Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West, translated by Daniel Ladinsky

St. John of the Cross has been long recognized as one of the world’s great mystical poets. His verse reveals a profound, tender experience of divine communion.

 

A heart of love

A heart of love

 

 

Sunflowers

Sunflowers

What a Wonderful World


 

Life is a glorious adventure. We are given opportunities to learn lessons and to face challenges. We are given happy times to make joyful memories and we are given times of such amazing joy, we need to pinch ourselves to see if it is real.  Life is golden and bright white light and it is such a good thing to be alive.

 

Life is also like that coin in your pocket. The one you flip and choose heads or tails with. Life can be painful and terrifying, it can be a waking nightmare. Ask a veteran what they think. Life can break your heart into small pieces. You can hear it crack open in the silence of your life. Life can produce as much darkness as it can light. It can take away your ability to trust and it can give you the friend who will be by your side for a score of years or more. Life can bring you shock or happy reverie and smooth sailing or rough seas.

 

So, in reality, life is a combination of events which can enrich and strengthen us or break us and leave us like a wounded bird at the bottom of a tree. What makes the difference?  We do. We are responsible for the outcome. We are not responsible for what life drops in our laps, but we are responsible for what we choose to do with it

 

Some people have rough lives and have a struggle year after year. Some of these people will rise up out of the mire and pull themselves up. Some will reach up to pull another person down with them. Some face terrifying heartache and loneliness and will do all that is humanly possible to make everyone around them as miserable as they are. Some choose to fill their hearts with an acid that damages their broken hearts even more than they were and are guaranteed to make someone else’s heart hurt as much as their own heart does.

 

Some people allow themselves to be so damaged, and seek no treatment for their damaged bodies, hearts and souls. Others will choose to seek help. To seek medication if necessary. Some will turn from the light that is in their lives and will seek to blot out that light wherever it can be found. Science hasn’t figured out yet why two people can go through the same horrible experiences and yet one will become a serial killer and one will spend their life trying to make the world better. Doctors and scientists are trying alternative measures to help people completely heal so that the remainder of their years on this plane can be filled with more light and love than they would otherwise have. Some choose to sneak around in the dark and making others suffer for what has happened to them. It is the innocent that they hurt. Perpetuating the problem and the pain.

 

It doesn’t matter if you believe in God, or which God you believe in. It doesn’t matter if life bent you or broke you. Each day is your choice. What are you going to do to make this world a wonderful place for yourself and for others? Tomorrow morning is a chance for you to make a new choice or to reinforce the ones you have all ready made.

 

No one can make this choice for anyone else. Never allow anyone to make it for you, even if your life is on the line. Each day wake up knowing you are what you are and you will make life easier, smoother and more loving for someone else. Or you will wake up, angry, resentful, bitter and try to make someone else feel the same way you do. I choose the love, joy, compassion, kindness and peace. That is my decision every day no matter what happens.

 

 

BJWordPressDivider

 

 

 

 

 

 

guarda5

Fleetwood Mac


This is the video from the Fleetwood Mac tour we went to see last night. Rhiananon is my song and has been since the seventies. It is my fall back song during trying times and what makes me lift my voice in joy. Everyone who is at all musical has a song, I think. Music is important to my life. It is the soundtrack for my bio. I love many kinds of music. Classical, blues, jazz, Zydeco, Swing and rock. Classic rock, hard rock and hair bands. But this song touches my heart every time I hear it. Musician friends have often played it for me. Music is part of the beauty that I incorporate into my life’s journey.

My first Beatles concert was when I was 13 and music renews me and keeps me young at heart. My inner child is alive and well according to my grandkids. My inner child still loves the rock concerts and I can scream and sing with the best.

I don’t think we need to completely grow up to be responsible adults. Love is one of the best reasons not to. Too many adults have forgotten how to laugh, love, and accept the events in this life which we cannot control.  This love helps us not to see the differences in people, but to lovingly include them into our friendships, families and worlds. It doesn’t matter what is beautiful to you, just surround yourself with what works for you and share it with all of the people you meet. Love is the glue of the cosmos and available to everyone. Thanks for letting me share my concert with you!

The idealistic teen years

Don’t ever lose your joy in life

Jimi Hendrix quote

Jimi Hendrix quote

A Tiny Drop of Water


     The Joy of Unity With the Universe

“O Lord,
One tiny bit of water rests on the palm of my hand.
I bring it to you and with it I bring the whole ocean
This tiny drop has the power to ease the burning thirst of men,
when spread on the earth, to give life to the seed and the future
harvest,
when poured on the fire to quench the blaze.
A tiny drop of water
can cleanse the whole of my impurity when blessed by your forgiveness.

—Ishpriya rscj

Blessings

Seeing the World Through Different Eyes

Invoking the powers of the Universe or bestowing on Mother Earth or other beings is neither a simple benevolent wish nor an act of hubris. It is really an act of creative confidence.We free ourselves to come into dynamic relationship with the entire Universe. “May all beings be happy.”

“What a thing it is to sit absolutely alone,
in the forest, at night, cherished by this
wonderful, unintelligible,
perfectly innocent speech,
The most comforting speech in the world,
the talk that rain makes by itself all over the ridges,
and the talk of the watercourses everywhere in the hollows!
Nobody started it, nobody is going to stop it.
It will talk as long as it wants, this rain.
As long as it talks I am going to listen.
————Thomas Merton

“Let us be united,
Let us speak in harmony,
Let our minds apprehend alike,
Common be our prayer,
Common be the end of our assembly,
Common be our resolution.
Alike be our feelings,
United be our hearts,
Common be our intentions,
Perfect be our unity.

—— From the Hindu Rig Veda

Cuyahogua Falls, Ohio;  Photo by Barbara Mattio

Cuyahogua Falls, Ohio; Photo by Barbara Mattio

Love and Peace Instead of War


Mother Teresa stated, ” Works of love are always works of peace.”

When and where there is God, there is peace. He/she pours their love for us and peace flows over us and within us. Divine love always pours joy and peace into our hearts. My prayer is to be led from despair to hope, from fear to trust, from hate to love, and from war to peace. Our world, our universe is Peace, Peace, Peace.

It cannot exist with war, hate and violence. Every day, we make choices about the world we create around us.

We all have the right to be at peace and happy. We were created to have this life of peace. We can each have peace in our world without causing pain or suffering to others. We each have a responsibility to use what we have been given to create peace. There is no other higher pleasure than to create peace and have that peace in your life create a ripple effect and flow out to touch others in positive ways.

We need to love one another as The One loves each of us. Accepting that love and using it to bring peace into your life will bring peace to those around you. As they feel covered and immersed in peace, it will flow out of their lives and will touch an ever larger group of people. It is a beautiful thing to see and experience.

Peace Plea

Please, protect my child.
Please, protect other mothers’ children.
Please, give me peace.
Please, give other mothers peace.
Please, give the world peace and justice.
This is the peace only you can give.”

————Karen Lavin

My Favorite Seagull


My home town

My first seagull was Johnathan Livingston Seagull. He really is a book by Richard Bach and my copy is from 1970 and is barely holding together. So I have read it, over and over. Johnathan is a seagull who doesn’t always fit in with the flock. He also questions things and he thinks.

Here in America, we have been victims of a dumbing down of the masses. We are not supposed to think or question what the government or society is doing. We are to believe what we are told. This concept never sat well with me. I am the kind of person who, to this day, likes to question, contemplate and find out the ‘real” truth.

Johnathan was a part of his flock and sailed on the wind currents as he had been taught to do. He and his friends would soar and play and life was good, except that he wondered if there might not be something more to life. He made the decision to see is he could fly higher than what the flock usually flew. So he made the decision to start off as usual but to attempt to fly higher and higher. He had separated from the rest of the flock and decided to try to fly higher in the moonlight. He flew to a thousand feet at full power and went into a vertical dive straight down. It wasn’t perfect the first time and he had to put in a lot of hard work and use all of his strength. He would soar downward at seventy miles an hour and end up soaking wet in the ocean. He continued to climb higher and higher and to descend faster. Then he crashed and was unconsciousness.

He had hit the water at ninety miles an hour.  When he awoke he was floating on the surface of the ocean. As he floated he heard an inner voice that told him he was a limited seagull. If he had been meant to fly higher and faster, he wouldn’t be a mere seagull. He heard a voice telling him to go back to the flock and make himself fit in and stop trying to be better.

As he took off, he went to five thousand feet and he forgot his vow to himself to go back to the flock. He practiced non-stop until later in the day and he had developed his style and he was proud he had conquered his fear.

The Gull Council called for a meeting and Johnathan was called to the middle of the Council to face charges and he realized someone must have seen him practicing this morning. He was told to stand in the center for Shame. He was devastated and he was told that he was facing charges of irresponsibility and violating the dignity and tradition of the Gull family.

He improved himself and could teach the others, but his defense fell on deaf and judgmental ears. How often in life, does someone have a dream, and works, sacrifices and accomplishes his/her dream. They fight family and society and friends but make themselves and the world better.

Johnathan sadly accepted his punishment. He was Outcast. He went out a ways gliding just as a seagull is supposed to do. He was then joined by two gulls and he began to fly level and then to fly higher. They kept up with him and he asks them who they were.  He was told, ” You have learned. One school is finished, and the time has come for another to begin.”

Johnathan looked around and said, ” I’m ready.” Johnathan rose with the other two gulls and flew up into a dark sky. Johnathan found himself in heaven and his outward glowing with light just like his companions.

When he asked about Heaven they told him, “Heaven was not a place, or a time. It is being perfect.” “You will begin to touch heaven, Johnathan, in the moment that you touch perfect speed.” They further explained that flying at a certain speed was a limit. They told him that perfect speed was just being there. Being there.

What a wonderful thought for me. A woman who never was satisfied with what I was told to think and to feel. So many times my questions and realizations that events or considerations made no logical sense. There were times I thought that if I heard, ‘Just do as I say,” I would scream and I knew I would never stop. So I tried to live my life as fully as I could. I worked to make a better place and chose not to live my life according to “the rules.” I could do more and learn more and I , like Johnathan, could soar. Has it been easy? No, it hasn’t. But the inner voice of Divinity guided me every time and no, I didn’t always listen but as I grew in maturity and inner strength, I almost always do now.

“Each of us is in truth an idea of the Great Gull, and unlimited idea of freedom.”
This sentence made me realize that we are all meant to be free. We are to be free and soar to meet with Divinity and to become all that we were meant to be. With Divinity inside, nothing can stop us but ourselves. I am not talking about doing unethical or immoral things, but the things that help us to become more and live fuller than most people can even conceive of. Johnathan was told he was a thousand years ahead of his time. This is okay. We will bring the rest of humanity kicking and screaming behind us and the world will have a jump in consciousness. Perhaps, one day we can bring everyone to a life of freedom, forgiveness, joy, compassion and love for all of our fellow sentient beings.

So I share my favorite seagull whenever I can and now I share him with you. I hope you will find him as inspiring as I did.

Seagull at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina Photo by Barbara Mattio

Soaring seagull over Lake Erie Photo by Barbara Mattio

Life and the Tree


Costa Rican Rainforest, Cleveland Botanical Gardens.
Photo by Barbara Mattio

A while ago, I wrote a blog called “For She is the Tree of Life” and it was dedicated to my grandmothers and all of the grandmas, nanas, bubes and the gifts they gave us as we shared their wisdom while at play with them, or while finishing a chore or just talking together. Their stories were magical and took some of us to other countries, for some the stories were pictures of love and loss. Other stories showed us how much strength and courage we could find inside of ourselves if we looked for it. They made us feel important and unique and cherished.

Well, now we are the grandparents. We are the ones who have lived long enough to be wise crones. We have watched wars and famine. We have seen oppression and tyranny. It is our turn to share our visions, stories and to encouraged them to be deeply rooted in our Mother Earth.

Our grandchildren will face many storms and will know fear as well as joy. They will sob with grief and they will cheer with jubilation. We need to make sure all of them — I have nine — will know how to draw strength and wisdom and courage up from the earth when it is needed. They will need to know it is the love we share, the compassion we show, the forgiveness we give to others that really counts. Not which job we have, or where the kids go to school. As grandparents, we can teach them to care, to vote, to accept responsibility for their actions. We can help expose them to the events in life that will sculpt their own lives. We need to teach them to stop injustice, help to feed the poor, work to help the world’s refugees, for among them, there could be the next Mozart, or John Lennon, or Bob Marley or Monet. We need to teach them never to settle, to reach for the stars and grasp a hold on their favorite and never let go!

I celebrate my opportunity to be a tree of life for the little ones. I celebrate your opportunity whether it is now or later on. It is a gift.

Marblehead Lighthouse, Ohio, Photo by Barbara Mattio