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Category: Photos


The Moment

The moment when, after many years of hard work and a long voyage you stand in the centre of your room, house, half-acre, square mile, island, country, knowing at last how you got there, and say, I own this, is the same moment when the trees unloose their soft arms from around you, the birds take back their language, the cliffs fissure and collapse, the air moves back from you like a wave and you can’t breathe. No, they whisper. You own nothing. You were a visitor, time after time climbing the hill, planting the flag, proclaiming. We never belonged

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Now is the Time

Now is the Time Now is the time to know That all that you do is sacred. Now, why not consider A lasting truce with yourself and God. Now is the time to understand That all your ideas of right and wrong Were just a child’s training wheels To be laid aside When you finally live With veracity And love. Hafiz is a divine envoy Whom the Beloved Has written a holy message upon. My dear, please tell me, Why do you still Throw sticks at your heart And God? What is it in that sweet voice inside That incites

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Prayers for Petunia

This has been one of those weeks where both joy and sorrow dwell together.  It has been a week of wonderful news and opportunities, but it has also been a week where I have not been feeling that well. Even more difficult was to bring my sweet Petunia into the vet today because of a small lump we found in her chest the other day and find out she needs surgery on Monday to have it removed and biopsied because it is quite possible she has cancer.  So yesterday I asked you to celebrate with me, and today I ask

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(photo of sparrow taken while sitting on a park bench in Riga, Latvia this summer) -Christine Valters Paintner @ Abbey of the Arts

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Encountering Coyote

Two weeks ago I shared my journey to the nearby cemetery on a foggy morning as a way of being present to my mother on the anniversary of her death.  One thing I did not share then was my brief encounter with coyote on this walk of remembering, in part because I needed to reflect more on this meeting before speaking of it. Despite the fact that I live in a very urban neighborhood of Seattle I had heard there are coyotes roaming who come from the many green spaces and Arboretum of our beautiful city, but I had never

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I long for You so much (a time of retreat)

I long for You so much I have even begun to travel Where I have never been before. -Hafiz (excerpt) Last week on Tuesday I piled my things into the car, the essentials like my journal, my yoga mat, my camera, and of course my sweet Petunia.  We headed north on I-5 to the Canadian border.  Two elements of getting to a retreat that feel important to me are a border crossing and a ferry ride and this time I had the gift of both.  When I arrived at the guard booth though, to my disappointment the guard waved me through with half a

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What Endures

Today is the fifth anniversary of my mother’s death. My time away on retreat the last few days was a time of ritual and remembering.  I will post more about the retreat itself in the next couple of days. Thank you for all of your beautiful blessings in comments and emails. Last night after I returned home we went to a friend’s house for Sukkot.  It is a 7-day festival that comes after the Jewish high holy days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur and during it, celebrants build sukkahs or tents and live in them as a remembrance of the Israelites time of wandering.  As my rabbi friend reflected, it

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