Sunday Simmers

Well, I mentioned I was going to give a reading on was for my Unitarian group...Firstly, I never knew how MUCH prep goes into a service. I know it can be more or less for a service but since I'm borderline type “A” personality I guess and I wanted a little bit more out of the service. Sigh...

Anyway, I gave my presentation/essay reading on Thich Nhat Hanh's book Touching Peace. I have read this book probably 4 or 5 times now and have read excerpts from it as well. I initially liked it because it gave physical reasons as to why meditation should be strived for to counter violent feelings and understand ourselves. For example, near Thich Nhat Hanh’s “monastery, a village was repeatedly destroyed by American forces, and each time was rebuilt by the monks. Finally the inhabitants of the village were killed in one bombing raid. Thich Nhat Hanh says that his rage over the situation forced him into a crucial choice in his life: either he would bow to his fury and go out killing the people who had killed these villagers … or he would go to the land where these soldiers came from and teach people there how to live more peaceably.”* It's something I have to think about a lot because of experiences in my past and how I would take-in whatever negative force was there instead of deflecting it.

As I spoke before our group, a sense of peace settled on me. Perhaps it was listening to IZ's song "Kaleohano" as the opening/welcoming song that gave me a sense of peace or an awareness that I was sharing something that is good. For whatever reason, I felt calm and happy. I rather liked preparing the music and even though I had to change two songs to ones I didn't know in the least (and found out one the most difficult the hymnal!), I was able to see the humor in it (and thankfully, controlled most of my giggling fit). So, that was a learning experience.

I also learned that previous fears as a young adult have really been swept aside. I realize now, I'm not as afraid as I was once...oh, I still get jitters and before we got to the chapel I had to stop at the market. I contemplated hiding out in the isles but soon felt silly for that.

Anyway, after the service, we did a visual meditation of blowing bubbles...and yes, I was inspired by Spongebob on some level...I would have preferred blowing bubbles outside but it was way too hot, so we did indoor bubble blowing. I think it went over nicely.

When we got home, we turned on our electric bubble blower and it was rather inspiring to see the bubbles lift off into the air currents and spiral out of sight. Very poetic in it's own way.

Here is an actual breathing meditation from Thich Nhat Hanh:

Breathing in, I know I am breathing in.
Breathing out, I know I am breathing out.

Breathing in, I see myself as a flower.
Breathing out, I feel fresh.

Breathing in, I see myself as a mountain.
Breathing out, I feel solid.

Breathing in, I see myself as still water.
Breathing out, I reflect things as they are.

Breathing in, I see myself as space.
Breathing out, I feel free.

I may just be volunteering for another service...I think I'll incorporate meditations as part of the opening prayer or reading when ever I volunteer to do this. We used to do a small meditation when I had my yoga class in California. Wish there was something like that around here...actually, I just remembered something. Jon wrote me and said that a monk from Vietnam has just bought a property off of eBay in Eastern PA and is planning to start a small monastery! I wonder if it will be a bit like Plum Village in Monastery in France? What a nice thought... Makes me even happier that we moved here to PA.


I was supposed to drop off some paintings at the vet's office but my car in the shop and I need to contact the gallery to get a few paintings from them. It's funny how when one starts to move in the direction that is right for them, things start to flow in a good way.

Trying to pick up a few things around the house since I'm house car & too hot to go out. I also want to plant some gourd seed from a gourd I let dry out from last year. It was kind of cool to see how hard it got...actually, Mr. Nelson broke open the base perfectly (like a little cap) and I could scrape out seeds with a cork screw. My grandmother used to buy gourds and make doll beds, I believe, spoons, and bird houses. Kind of a cool tradition, actually.


I have to say having a "speaking engagement" gave me all sorts of energy and I did quite a few art quilts and other projects. I think it's good to have something to look forward too where you're the giver and not just the recipient.



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