HE’S MY BROTHER

Someone once met a lad going to school long before the days when transport was provided. The lad was carrying on his back a smaller boy who was clearly lame and unable to walk.

The stranger said to the lad, “Do you carry him to school every day?”

“Yes,” said the boy.

“That’s a heavy burden for you to carry,” said the stranger.

“He’s not heavy,” said the boy. “He’s my brother.”

Source |  William…

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HEALING LIGHT

This morning I prayed with this piece of music. Here are some suggestions for you.

Prepare

Find a quiet place. Center down and take a few deep breathes. Sit in a relaxed manner.

Listen

Play the piece of music to get a sense of it. Invite the flow of the melody in. Pay attention to the sounds and the pauses and rests between the notes. Notice any dominant sound, image or feeling elicited by the music. Rest in silence for a short while.

Reflect

Play the music a second time. Allow to the dominant sound, image or feeling from the first hearing to draw you deeper into the experience. Notice how the music moves you … how it touches your heart. Watch for memories, feelings and images that might emerge. Feel the music flowing through you. Rest in silence for a short while.

Respond

Play the music a third time. Focus on how your heart desires to respond. What is the invitation present in the unfolding of sounds, images, memories, and feelings for you today? How is God speaking to your life in this moment through this music?

Rest in the Presence

Linger in silence. Slowly release the words, the sounds, the feelings or images stirring in you.

Closing

Conclude with a gesture or a short prayer. At this point you may choose to listen to the music one last time from the other side, outside the prayer period that is.

HEALING LIGHT | LYRICS

Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you

Amen
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen.

Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the gentle night to you
Moon and stars pour their healing light on you

Amen
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen.
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen.

Deep peace of Christ, The light of the world to you
Deep peace of Christ to you.
Deep peace of Christ, The light of the world to you

Amen
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen.

Music Info | Healing Light : A Celtic Prayer
from The Peacemakers by Karl Jenkins

A FLOWER DOES NOT TALK
Silently a flower blooms,In silence it falls away;Yet here now, at this moment, at this place,the whole of the flower, the whole ofthe world is blooming.This is the talk of the flower, the truthof the blossom:The glory of eternal life is fully shining here.
Zenkei Shibayama, A Flower Does Not Talk (Tuttle Publishing, 1989) back cover.
Photo | Philip Chircop

A FLOWER DOES NOT TALK

Silently a flower blooms,
In silence it falls away;
Yet here now, at this moment, at this place,
the whole of the flower, the whole of
the world is blooming.
This is the talk of the flower, the truth
of the blossom:
The glory of eternal life is fully shining here.

Zenkei Shibayama, A Flower Does Not Talk (Tuttle Publishing, 1989) back cover.

Photo | Philip Chircop

AIRPORT QUESTIONS

Talking of baggage, luggage and travelling, here’s a hilarious video for you to enjoy. Once the laughter is over, spend some quiet time with the “airport questions”. Replace the word "luggage" with “my life”. After all, in some ways, you are the “luggage” you carry with you wherever you go. 

  • Could anybody have interfered with your luggage?
  • Have you left your luggage unattended?
  • Did you pack your own luggage?
  • Does your luggage has any distinguishing features?

HERE IS WHERE YOU START
Two twin brothers, chartered different life journeys for themselves. One ended up in the prison cell beside his father, for similar crimes. The other twin had an amazingly successful career and became a leader in his field. 
A curious interviewer was interested in how the twins both followed different life directions, after being raised by a father who was abusive and who eventually ended up in prison. He put the same question to both twins “why has your life turned out like it has?”
Strangely enough, both twins answered in exactly the same way; “with an upbringing like I had, how could you expect me to end up any other way”. 
An amazing response to a simple question. One twin saw his father’s example of the way to behave, the other twin saw the example as a way not to behave. Interesting. 
Quotation | Nido QubeinPhoto | Philip Chircop sj

HERE IS WHERE YOU START

Two twin brothers, chartered different life journeys for themselves. One ended up in the prison cell beside his father, for similar crimes. The other twin had an amazingly successful career and became a leader in his field.

A curious interviewer was interested in how the twins both followed different life directions, after being raised by a father who was abusive and who eventually ended up in prison. He put the same question to both twins “why has your life turned out like it has?”

Strangely enough, both twins answered in exactly the same way; “with an upbringing like I had, how could you expect me to end up any other way”.

An amazing response to a simple question. One twin saw his father’s example of the way to behave, the other twin saw the example as a way not to behave. Interesting. 

Quotation | Nido Qubein
Photo | Philip Chircop sj

KISSING

Here’s something about “kissing”! Enjoy the sound and flow of this piece of music and let it enter you deep. Allow it to invade the cave of your heart … rest with whatever emerges … in silence. Listen to the song two or three times, each time allowing an extended pause of silence … then emerge slowly … peacefully.

"You and I" … who is the "you" in this story of connection? And who is the "I"?

The red light of the sun
Slowly descending
The sky is all I see
It’s never ending

We could fly
You and I
On a cloud
Kissing, kissing

The wind plays with the leaves
The weather turns colder
But as long as we believe
Love doesn’t get older

We could fly
You and I
On a cloud
Kissing, kissing

On a journey of the heart
There’s so much to see
And when the sky is dark
You’ll be right here, right here with me

Right here with me
Kissing

Kissing, kissing
Kissing, kissing

THE PHOTOGENIC LILY

One evening after dinner the master and the disciple were looking at some photos. The disciple picked a beautiful photograph of a water lily, held it in his hands, and gazing upon it, asked, “Tell me master, how were you able to take such a splendid picture?”

With a smile, the master replied, “Well, I had to be very patient and very attentive. It was only after a few hours of compliments that…

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MARCHING TOGETHER
Today marks the death anniversary  of archbishop Dom Helder Camara. Here’s one quotation to walk with today:
“Keep your language. Love its sounds, its modulation, its rhythm. But try to march together with people of different languages, remote from your own, who wish like you for a more just and human world.” |  Hélder Câmara, Spiral Of Violence
What can you do to facilitate marching in sync with the varied steps of those whose thinking is different than yours?
 

MARCHING TOGETHER

Today marks the death anniversary  of archbishop Dom Helder Camara. Here’s one quotation to walk with today:

“Keep your language. Love its sounds, its modulation, its rhythm. But try to march together with people of different languages, remote from your own, who wish like you for a more just and human world.” |  Hélder Câmara, Spiral Of Violence

What can you do to facilitate marching in sync with the varied steps of those whose thinking is different than yours?

 

GRATEFULNESS AND HAPPINESS
“In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy.” | Brother David Steindl-Rast
This lovely quote by Brother David drew out another one from deep within me, a quote I use often in my retreats. This one is by Melody Beattie:
"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow".
Find some time today to hold a 2-minute gratitude session.  Sit down in a relaxed manner, with no distractions, close your eyes, and think about what you’re grateful for and who you’re grateful for. 
WARNING : This exercise, if done often, has the potential of radically changing your life, even perhaps, turning it upside-down (or is it downside-up?)

GRATEFULNESS AND HAPPINESS

“In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy.” | Brother David Steindl-Rast

This lovely quote by Brother David drew out another one from deep within me, a quote I use often in my retreats. This one is by Melody Beattie:

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow".

Find some time today to hold a 2-minute gratitude session.  Sit down in a relaxed manner, with no distractions, close your eyes, and think about what you’re grateful for and who you’re grateful for. 

WARNING : This exercise, if done often, has the potential of radically changing your life, even perhaps, turning it upside-down (or is it downside-up?)

THANK YOU
I often ask myself, at the end of a day: "How many genuine "thank yous" did I say today?" I find it to be a good question. It helps me stay rooted in gratitude, remembering that everything and everyone is a gift.
In the morning, when you get up, gently open your eyes, place your hands on your heart and say, "Thank you".
In the evening, before you go to bed at night, close your eyes, place your hands on your heart and say, "Thank you".

THANK YOU

I often ask myself, at the end of a day: "How many genuine "thank yous" did I say today?" I find it to be a good question. It helps me stay rooted in gratitude, remembering that everything and everyone is a gift.

In the morning, when you get up, gently open your eyes, place your hands on your heart and say, "Thank you".

In the evening, before you go to bed at night, close your eyes, place your hands on your heart and say, "Thank you".

POMEGRANATE
Here is a poem to walk with today: Pomegranate by D. H. Lawrence. Allow it’s lovely words to flow. Some will perhaps confuse you a little, or disturb you even. Stay with the words and the images. Read it out loud again, and perhaps for a third time. Than pick the sweetest part and the juiciest part of it and treasure it throughout the day.

You tell me I am wrong.Who are you, who is anybody to tell me I am wrong?I am not wrong. In Syracuse, rock left bare by the viciousness of Greek    women.No doubt you have forgotten the pomegranate-trees in    flower,Oh so red, and such a lot of them. Whereas at VeniceAbhorrent, green, slippery cityWhose Doges were old, and had ancient eyes.In the dense foliage of the inner gardenPomegranates like bright green stone,And barbed, barbed with a crown.Oh, crown of spiked green metalActually growing! Now in Tuscany,Pomegranates to warm, your hands at;And crowns, kingly, generous, tilting crownsOver the left eyebrow. And, if you dare, the fissure! Do you mean to tell me you will see no fissure?Do you prefer to look on the plain side? For all that, the setting suns are open.The end cracks open with the beginning:Rosy, tender, glittering within the fissure. Do you mean to tell me there should be no fissure?No glittering, compact drops of dawn?Do you mean it is wrong, the gold-filmed skin, integument,    shown ruptured? For my part, I prefer my heart to be broken.It is so lovely, dawn-kaleidoscopic within the crack.

"Pomegranate" by D. H. Lawrence in Birds, Beasts, And Flowers: Poems By D. H. Lawrence, (David R. Godine, 2007) pages 13-14

POMEGRANATE

Here is a poem to walk with today: Pomegranate by D. H. Lawrence. Allow it’s lovely words to flow. Some will perhaps confuse you a little, or disturb you even. Stay with the words and the images. Read it out loud again, and perhaps for a third time. Than pick the sweetest part and the juiciest part of it and treasure it throughout the day.

You tell me I am wrong.
Who are you, who is anybody to tell me I am wrong?
I am not wrong.
 
In Syracuse, rock left bare by the viciousness of Greek
    women.
No doubt you have forgotten the pomegranate-trees in
    flower,
Oh so red, and such a lot of them.
 
Whereas at Venice
Abhorrent, green, slippery city
Whose Doges were old, and had ancient eyes.
In the dense foliage of the inner garden
Pomegranates like bright green stone,
And barbed, barbed with a crown.
Oh, crown of spiked green metal
Actually growing!
 
Now in Tuscany,
Pomegranates to warm, your hands at;
And crowns, kingly, generous, tilting crowns
Over the left eyebrow.
 
And, if you dare, the fissure!
 
Do you mean to tell me you will see no fissure?
Do you prefer to look on the plain side?
 
For all that, the setting suns are open.
The end cracks open with the beginning:
Rosy, tender, glittering within the fissure.
 
Do you mean to tell me there should be no fissure?
No glittering, compact drops of dawn?
Do you mean it is wrong, the gold-filmed skin, integument,
    shown ruptured?
 
For my part, I prefer my heart to be broken.
It is so lovely, dawn-kaleidoscopic within the crack.

"Pomegranate" by D. H. Lawrence in Birds, Beasts, And Flowers: Poems By D. H. Lawrence, (David R. Godine, 2007) pages 13-14