Mindfulness Meditation

The Beauty of this World, this Moment

We live in difficult times, but times made difficult by the machinations of people.  Greed, hatred, and ignorance drive us to living in delusion, always wanting more, or at least something other than what we already have.  Take the time to stop and notice the actual world, still present despite the suffering we create on our own. Grasp the beauty and wonder of nature, and the solace and healing of love. Do not do so to escape the present turmoil, but to renew your faith that this is a world worth saving.

Today’s quotes are from Barry Lopez’s book “Arctic Dreams.” Mr. Lopez died on Christmas Day, 2020. His book is a reflection formed while visiting the Arctic regions. It is at once a lesson in history, archeology, anthropology, and spirituality. It is a wonderment!

Today’s Quotes:

“Whatever evaluation we finally make of a stretch of land, however, no matter how profound or accurate, we will find it inadequate. The land retains an identity of its own, still deeper and more subtle than we can know. Our obligation toward it then becomes simple: to approach with an uncalculating mind, with an attitude of regard. To try to sense the range and variety of its expression—its weather and colors and animals. To intend from the beginning to preserve some of the mystery within it as a kind of wisdom to be experienced, not questioned. And to be alert for its openings, for that moment when something sacred reveals itself within the mundane, and you know the land knows you are there.”

“Lying flat on your back on Ellesmere Island on rolling tundra without animals, without human trace, you can feel the silence stretching all the way to Asia.  The winter face of a muskox, its unperturbed eye glistening in a halo of snow-encrusted hair, looks at you over a cataract of time, an image that has endured through all the pulsations of ice. 

You can sit for a long time with the history of man like a stone in your hand.  The stillness, the pure light, encourage it.”

From “Arctic Dreams” by Barry Lopez

Video of today’s meditation:

Audio of today’s meditation:



Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness in a Time of Turmoil

Being mindful is not a passive state of observation and musing. Rather it is an active awareness, a commitment to connection, and an obligation for the one living mindfully to speak to the truth.  Now more than ever mindful people are needed to prophetic witness.

How do we respond to turmoil? To hatred, displayed publicly or in a private conversation? Paraphrasing Pema Chodron, we have to ask ourselves whether we prefer to grow up and relate to life directly, or choose to live and die in fear.

Our mindfulness practices are not intended as an escape from the turmoil and suffering of the world. Rather, this practice prepares us to be ready to face these difficulties with equanimity, able to choose responses wisely.

It is not a time to retreat. We must confront hatred and suffering when and where they exist. But to do so with mindful curiosity, openness, acceptance, and maybe even compassion will help each of us to suffer a little less, and may even get the attention of someone steeped in hatred and suffering.

In today’s meditation I read this poem, which captures the feeling that I’m trying to get at. I hope you enjoy it.

Think Like a Tree

Soak up the sun

Affirm life’s magic

Be graceful in the wind

Stand tall after a storm

Feel refreshed after it rains

Grow strong without notice

Be prepared for each season

Provide shelter to strangers

Hang tough through a cold spell

Emerge renewed at the first signs of spring

Stay deeply rooted while reaching for the sky

Be still long enough to

hear your own leaves rustling.

— Karen I. Shragg

Today’s video:

Today’s Audio: