Getting lost is another exercise in navigation

3

It will be all right in the end, and maybe even in the middle. You will not suffer as long as you think you will. You are not fated to be unhappy. You are not destined for failure. Remember who you are. Let me say it again. Remember who you are. Be gentle. Practice exquisite acts of self-care. You don’t have to be as strong as you think you do. You don’t have to be wise and certain about your path. Your frailty is beautiful, and your innocence too. Getting lost is another exercise in navigation. You can’t fix everything you touch. You won’t break everything you touch. Don’t apologize if you’re tired. Don’t second-guess your stomach. Maintain eye contact with everything, especially yourself. Fall to your knees at least once a day. Say yes at least twice. Love daringly, wholly, unapologetically. Believe in magic. Befriend your fear. Look up. Listen. The birds will tell you everything you need to know about flight. Forgive yourself your great sadness. Unlock what hurts. Make a prayer for loss. Unpen your words. Get messier than anyone thinks you should. You’ll know when you’re ready. I’ll say it again. You’ll know when you’re ready.

–  You Will Know, by Maya Stein

the world offers itself to your imagination

yiyinglu_wildgeeseflying-456x343

Wild Geese


You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees

for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body

love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you  mine.

Meanwhile the world goes on.

Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain

are moving across the landscapes,

over the prairies and the deep trees,

the mountains and the rivers.

Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,

are heading home again.

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,

the world offers itself to your imagination,

calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting,

over and over announcing your place

in the family of things.

– mary oliver

(artwork: Wild Geese Flying by Yiying Lu)

Your one perfect kingdom.

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PAVEMENT

You don’t have to sleep inside tonight.
You don’t have to sleep at all.
You can go out late
after the rest of the town has settled
and treat any empty parking lot
like your own personal ocean
lay out some beach towels
a radio
bring some friends,
a volleyball,
a cooler if you like.

It doesn’t matter your age.
You can play until the sun comes up
and the cars pull in
and all those tired faces pile out
into the brand new morning
unaware
that while they slept
comfortable and sound
you swam the endless sea
rode a whale
and claimed an island
in the name of your one perfect kingdom.

– Dallas Clayton

to just let go

dance

What if it truly doesn’t matter what you do but how you do whatever you do?

How would this change what you choose to do with your life?

What if you could be more present and open-hearted with each person you
encounter working as a cashier in the corner store, a parking lot attendant
or filing clerk than you could if you were striving to do something you
think is more important?

How would this change how you want to spend your precious time on this earth?

What if your contribution to the world and the fulfillment of you own
happiness is not dependent upon discovering a better method of prayer or
technique of meditation, not dependent upon reading the right book or
attending the right seminar, but upon really seeing and deeply appreciating
yourself and the world as they are right now?

How would this effect your search for spiritual development?

What if there is no need to change, no need to try and transform yourself
into someone who is more compassionate, more present, more loving or wise?

How would this effect all the places in your life where you are endlessly
trying to be better?

What if the task is simply to unfold, to become who you already are in your
essential nature- gentle, compassionate and capable of living fully and
passionately present?

How would this effect how you feel when you wake up in the morning?

What if who you essentially are right now is all that you are ever going to be?

How would this effect how you feel about your future?

What if the essence of who you are and always have been is enough?

How would this effect how you see and feel about your past?

What if the question is not why am I so infrequently the person I really
want to be, but why do I so infrequently want to be the person I really am?

How would this change what you think you have to learn?

What if becoming who and what we truly are happens not through striving and
trying but by recognizing and receiving the people and places and practises
that offer us the warmth of encouragement we need to unfold?

How would this shape the choices you have to make about how to spend today?

What if you knew that the impulse to move in a way that creates beauty in
the world will arise from deep within and guide you every time you simply
pay attention and wait?

How would this shape your stillness, your movement, your willingness to
follow this impulse, to just let go and dance?

– Oriah

Imagine what could happen if we were willing to…

Take a risk. Practice being brave. Do something we’ve always wanted to do. Make space for ourselves. Make space for what we love. Slow down. Breathe deeper. Reach inward. Open outward. Share our stories. Listen. Pay attention. Ask questions. Wait for the answers. Make a move. Sit still. Find our voices again. Sing our songs.  Dance our bones. Tell the truth.  Make a mess. Play. Forgive. Create without judgement or fear. Show kindness and compassion to ourselves…and our neighbours. See each moment as a gift. Just imagine…

2

love the questions

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves.

Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them.

And the point is to live everything.

Live the questions.

– Rainer Maria Rilke

1

Listen to your Life

Featured-Image3

Listen to your life.

See it for the fathomless mystery that it is.

In the bordeom and pain of it, no less than in the excitement and gladness:

touch, taste, smell your way

to the holy and hidden heart of it because in the last analysis,

all moments are key moments,

and life itself is grace.

– Frederick Buechner

Fold Things Workshop

summer skies

Our deepest fear is NOT that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are the child of the creator.
Your playing small doesn’t serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are born to make manifest the glory of the creator that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us, it’s in everyone, and as we let our own light shine, we consciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

~ Marianne Williamson ~

wild geese

Featured-Image1

You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body

love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.

Meanwhile the world goes on.

Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain

are moving across the landscapes,

over the prairies and the deep trees,

the mountains and the rivers.

Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,

are heading home again.

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,

the world offers itself to your imagination,

calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting –

over and over announcing your place

in the family of  things.

– mary oliver

Words + Photos + Credit

Unless otherwise noted, all original photography and text are property of Raechelle Kennedy. If you see or read something here and feel inspired to share it somehow, please be considerate and give the artist (me!) credit, or even better, drop me a note and make sure I don’t mind.
Thank you!

Here + There

Secondhand Sainthood and the gift of losing it all – Topology Magazine, December 2015

Ten Things Made – Topology Magazine, December 2015

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