Give however little you have!

“Give,even if you have little”
~~~~ Buddha ~~~~

The widow’s offering…..according to the Christian gospels, while watching people in the temple put their monetary offerings into the treasury box,Jesus tells his disciples to look at the poor widow who put in 2 copper coins while the rich were putting in quite a bit of money …so he says to them, “in truth the widow has put in more than the others because the rich were putting in their surpluses while this poor woman gave all that she had!”

Are we afraid of giving,either giving of ourselves to those in need,to make sincere time or put an effort to bring cheer or to be kind to others(not only the ones we like or near and dear to us)to make someone ‘happy’just to see them happy and not to please our own needs.

Even when we do not receive anything from making others to feel uplifted, will we lose anything,……. perhaps we might gain joy and a sense of meaningful living from doing so,our hearts are learning to be wise and compassionate,it is learning to be open to love without conditions and limitations………..

Even when we cannot be present to give of our time and effort,we can practise the offering of our sincere kind thoughts and intentions by way of prayers, supplications, wishes and pleasant kindly surprises etc….
We might each be caught up with our own state of affairs and problems and so are the others…and it doesn’t mean that we take for granted that people who seem well to do, busy enjoying life and look seemingly happy are at peace and are not in need of kindly attentions!

If we can but give a few moments of our thoughtful time for others,we can practise opening the heart to generosity and kindness,instead of keeping it locked in…….thinking we are the only ones suffering or going thru rough and lonely,difficult desperate times.When we relate to others by way of thoughfulness and understanding and respect,we soften our hearts and therefore can be resilient and be adaptable to our own difficult circumstances ……..

When we truly give even if we have little……we acknowledge and witness to the wealth we already are within…….

I like to honor my father Harold in this aspect of generosity,giving the very little he had …..a man who did not have much by way of financial security but a man rich of heart………..I remember my father’s kindness especially so when he would sacrifice his share of food to give to 2 poor families whom he temporarily allowed to come live with us in our simple home,I remember they made makeshift beds and little shelters in our living room with carboard boxes.My father made sure they had food to eat….no matter, he was always willing to eat less so others may share in the meal.As I write this I can feel the generosity/kindness of his heart and most importantly he never made a fuss or complained or showed disrespect to these poor families ….both families were only mothers with children( a couple of mentally disabled children included)…………..I guess unconsciously then I learned a lot from my father’s kindness,from his very little offerings to us,his family,friends,relatives and to strangers and to all who came into our humble home………………………………………….

Advertisements

Let it be

This song is truly spiritually meaningful………….the words of wisdom here is “let it be”…………”there will be an answer”…….in life there will always be an answer…..whether it be good/bad,positive/negative,yes/no….whatever the outcome ….we simply allow things to be…..we learn to accept and adapt to the given situation…….yes sometimes we have to wait for a while before the answer we need to know comes,in the meantime we learn to be patient and gracious and remain humble and trusting and open, not clinging or manipulating,trying to control to what we think we need but simply flowing with life’s given opportunities for spiritual growth and there is always light shining Within!

 

Paul Mcartney(of the famous Beatles) wrote the song let it be thru an inspiration he had in a dream of his mother Mary saying to him at a time of darkness in his life ….he heard her telling him to …..”let it be!”

Whether we want to make it that the Virgin Mary is speaking words of wisdom… “let it be” or anybody else inspirational saying there will be an answer….we can allow ourselves to be imaginative and creative and listen attentively with our hears to the words and bring in comfort that all things are impermanent and will work accordingly and simply let it be,let things be, let life open whatever,however,with whomever we need to learn to enrich our lives with courage and presence.

 

This song brings back a memory of a time when I was newly walking on my spiritual journey some 18/19 years ago. I was invited by the spiritual leader Sr.Elise of the Good Shepherd Convent to go to Cuba to try and open a convent there in Havana.We met the archbishop or bishop,I wasn’t too sure which,but I remember he held my hand and didn’t want to let it go,all the time talking to me in English while talking to Sr. Elise in Spanish.It was a time of spiritual beauty, grace and little miracles I experienced internally……I felt like the universe had laid out beautiful shells and conches on the beach while I walked on the sand.We were also graciously invited to go visit a convent there for lunch.

 

After all the work done by Sr. Elise,it was time to leave Cuba,while waiting for the bus to go to the airport,Sr. Elise asked me…..what do you think,will a convent come to fruition here in Cuba…….I replied I don’t know,there will be an answer,just let t be………..and as soon as we boarded the bus……the very first song that played on the bus stereo as we settled to sit down….was Let it be by the Beatles! And of course I turned to Sr.Elise and said here is your answer!

 

We do what we need to do and let things be…………………

The humble beggar

The spiritual journey is like a humble hungry beggar who knocks on the door of the Master for food,quietly persistent,never complaining or showing anger despite being turned away umpteen times.The master finally sees the patience,sincerity and devotion of the beggar and at last invites the beggar in for a sumptous feast!

In Truth

…..take courage to always act and speak in truth for it will bind you not to fear and guilt…………….

According to the gospel of Matthew……… Jesus called the crowd to him. He said, “Listen and understand.. “What goes into someone’s mouth does not make him/her ‘unclean.’ It’s what comes out of their mouth that makes them ‘unclean.’ ”

So therefore we practise mindfulness and awareness of presence within in order to scan the conscience for whatever comes from within us reflects our inner states…..

Sharing our stories

We need to share our stories of tragedies and failures, betrayals and disappointments, heartbreaks and griefs and how it changed(improved) or affected our lives,how we utilised courage and strength,had to make difficult wise decisions to benefit ourselves and others,how we had to forgive and love despite adversities,how we learned to have faith and trust in moments of hopelesness and despair,how we jumped hurdles that we never thought we could and why we did the things we did in order to fulfill our lives higher purpose!

We need to inspire,to motivate, to encourage true goodness and truth and peacefulness and harmony,respect,integrity,understanding and dignity within ourselves and the lives of others.

If not us who is going to facilitate this for the benefit of ourselves,our children, environment and the world….isnt there enough of misery around us all.It is so easy to partake and enjoy external reveries,fantasies and illusory ephemeral pleasures but why are we so afraid to access and display the beauty abound within us?

Fill the heart with tenderness

When life opens up to rough times,hurts,dissappointments and unhappy experiences……feel and fill your heart with tenderness,that tenderness is like a bed of feathers to fall on…….but when we use anger,resentments,animosity and hatred to try to fight/defend back…….it is like pouring cement into the heart to harden it,therefore when we fall,we fall on concrete ground,causing even further damage and continued pain and suffering……………..

Surrendering

Surrendering

In every moment,everywhere around the globe,there is someone going thru some kind of turmoil in their lives…..some minor ones and some truly devastating ones,some where the families are being torn apart with so much grief and suffering,because of violence,abuse,negligence with threats of separations/divorce and children being taken away from one parent or the other or from both…

There is no denial to this truth and how it affects everyone,short-term, eventually long term and life time scarring.The mental,emotional, spiritual and physical fighting and animosity can become tremendously traumatic and destructive,leaving wounds to continuously bleed within the psyche.There is a sense of being out of control unable to help contain the devastation,the war between two parties usually….each one has their story to justify…there is no stopping to the negative afflictive mental story telling that plays over and over in the mind.

Do we continue to prolong this tiresome and energy draining,spiritually damaging battle?Yes it is easier said then done when we are in the throes of such unimaginable suffering to which many might not relate or understand the gravity of the problem.

We very often get all kinds of criticism, opinions,advices and suggestions from others telling or sometimes demanding us what to do in such circumstances.Some maybe reasonable pointers and good criticism we need pay some attention to yet the undeniable truth is that we are the ones having to face, deal and complete the healing process as it unfolds with or without support and help.

Surrender is the vital strategy……to give ourselves permission to stop and listen to our own sufferings for a while…there is too much chaos going on in the mind, in the heart, in the psyche and physically as well…we cant think properly,therefore may not act or tread carefully and cause more damage to the situation.

Putting up the white flag doesnt mean we allow ourselves to be trampled or toppled over it simply means we want to take ownership to engage in peacefulness/mindfulness within ourselves before we continue to deal with the reality of what needs to be done.When we first take the courage to put down our weapons(anger,hatred, bitterness, vengence,fighting back,retaliation),it gives no cause for the other party to keep attacking.

If we can come to some sort of recognition and awareness of the situation we are caught in,we can bring that attention into our own being,looking within ourselves to see truly what is happening….we cannot stop or be in control of another,we cannot change the situation that is in disarray(we might be able to pick up the pieces at a later time,when we find some sort of settling down first).

There is a Zen Buddhist story of the strawberry….it goes like this…….a man was being chased by a tiger,he came to the edge of a cliff,terrified, he saw a vine by the cliff’s edge and jumped over to hang onto the vine.While he was hanging on to the vine, he looked below and saw another tiger there,and to add more terror to his plight,there were 2 mice gnawing at the vine……..therefore he acknowledged he was doomed……but beside the vine, there was a strawberry patch………it looked delicious,he let go of the vine to pick the strawberries!

So what is this story trying to teach is…….let go! and as the christian saying goes…”let go and let God”…it means to surrender to the what is happening,to stop trying to cling onto,  to try not to be rigid and  control what in reality cannot be controlled or to be identified with our mind’s chaos and life’s difficult situation……if we allow ourselves the freedom to let things be, we open up a space for a shift,it might be a gift of ‘strawberries’(graces/blessings) that help us land with a tender heart which might help lighten and make the suffering endurable!And who knows ‘miracles’ we never thought could manifest are also possible when we humble ourselves to surrender………….