I am happy because I am grateful!
The tragic numbers of people dying by suicide in Ireland.
I know 2 families affected this year alone and, through a close friend, of at least 6 more in the last 4 years – one a girl of 14 – and all in the small town I live in. I hear of many more attempts at my 12-step meetings, but there, at least, they are followed by redemption.
I have tried twice to post this as a reply to Diane, but it isn’t showing up! Don’t know why.
Thank you for the clarification, Diane. I had heard of George MacLeod and his work on Iona, and your posts have rekindled my interest in it, although I have never been. Perhaps I’ll go when I can visit Scotland again.
I found the poem, The Glory in the Grey, that your quote came from online at:
It’s wonderful! As is Macleod’s rewriting of St Patrick’s Breastplate which I found here:
And I discovered another that moved me here:
And thank you also for the introduction to John Philip Newell. I see he made the same journey between Scotland and Canada that I did – although in the reverse direction!
I was in Canada for over 30 years before moving to Ireland in 2006. I now live in the next county to Limerick (I think I mentioned this before!)
I see Newell did pilgrimage to Iona in the days before and hopes to resume them next year. Perhaps I’ll make my visit with his group!
I checked on the availability of “Listening For The Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality” and I hope to pick up a copy next week. I somehow stubbed my toe very hard on the wheel of a supermarket trolley a few days ago resulting in the nail tearing off and a fracture! It has been too painful to walk/drive, but much better today so I should be mobile again by Monday and will visit the bookstore.
Beannachtaí (Blessings in Irish this time!)
This beautifully written article touched me immensely today. I wanted to share it with those who will appreciate it – my gratefulness.org friends.
I am both appreciator and creator.
I own some beautiful pieces of sculpture, paintings and large format photographs printed in the rare and beautiful carbon pigment process.
Sadly I don’t have enough space to have them all with me at the moment, so I have lent some to friends who appreciate them until –hopefully – I can reclaim them. A lot more is in storage with a friend. I inventoried them recently and it was sad. Perhaps I need to sell them so I can have a larger s...
Sadly I don’t have enough space to have them all with me at the moment, so I have lent some to friends who appreciate them until –hopefully – I can reclaim them. A lot more is in storage with a friend. I inventoried them recently and it was sad. Perhaps I need to sell them so I can have a larger space but then I won’t have them to grace my space!
In the time before, when we could travel, visiting art galleries and museums was always top of my list of sightseeing. I have seen a lot of second-rate stuff, despite the fame of the artist, but when the jewel among the dross is viewed, tears run unbidden down my face.
I share a studio now and am painting again when I can. Sometimes I love the results, but not always.
Making the invisible visible – the measure of art for me – is often elusive, but the striving is so worthwhile.
I have been so busy helping a friend with legal work that my studio time has been necessarily curtailed recently. But tomorrow I will go back and immerse myself in color. My soul is crying for it.
And for live performances of theatre, opera and music. How I miss them.
I’m so grateful that this question was asked today because it has caused me to reflect that art holds a hugely important place in my life and instead of missing it, I can create it.
As Edith Piaf – and many others – sang, “Non, je ne regrette rien”.
I don’t regret anything that I have or haven’t done. I made a conscious decision as a teenager to never entertain regrets. Wishing for the impossibility of turning back time to do/think/feel things differently seemed pointless then and still seems pointless now. I don’t live in the past – I live in the present.
Instead I accept the consequences of my commissions or omissions and, h...
Instead I accept the consequences of my commissions or omissions and, hopefully learn a lesson for the future. “If (when!) you lose, don’t lose the lesson” is a teaching I adopted instead and I haven’t regretted it!
Invariably at 12-Step meetings.
I’m really looking forward to reading all of today’s reflections to see if you wise and perceptive folks can shed some light on the meaning of this question!
I have never (consciously at least) heard my heart whisper!
Maybe my heart’s whisper is so quiet that I can’t hear it (drowned out by its shouting perhaps?) or I – gasp! –don’t have a heart? Nah, can’t be that!
Maybe I use a different word! I do have intuitions…is that a heart whisper?
Hopefully all will be revealed by the end of the day!
It was 1993, and I was at drama school in NYC when Schindler’s List was released. I went to see it with some of my classmates, one of whom was a young and generally effusive German man of around 25. Afterwards everybody came back to my apartment for coffee and a discussion about the film and, particularly, the fantastic acting.
Our young German friend, who usually shared perceptive critical remarks about any film or play we went to, sat in silence in a kind of daze and it was only...
Our young German friend, who usually shared perceptive critical remarks about any film or play we went to, sat in silence in a kind of daze and it was only when he was asked outright for his opinion that he murmured, “They never told us.” When asked who “They” were, he said his parents and teachers.
I found it easy to believe that his parents hadn’t discussed the Hitler period, as, in common with the parents of German and Austrian friends I now have, his father was a member of the Nazi party and, of course, was in the army.
But I couldn’t believe that he had no knowledge of the Holocaust. I spoke to him privately about it the next day and he explained that while it had indeed been mentioned in history class, it had been glossed over in a few sentences and no-one had explained any of the details or the full horror that it entailed. And of course, his teachers were likely either former Nazis themselves, or offspring of such. Their country’s history was either to be denied completely or to be presented sparingly. It wasn’t exactly revisionist, but it sure wasn’t full disclosure. It wasn’t personal.
But the movie had opened his eyes and he went on to become a voracious reader of books about Hitler and his Final Solution.
So the movie itself changed his life, but it also changed and illuminated my perspective of the power that filmmaking (and culture in general) has to illustrate and teach about life.
Thank you for this, ABC. The analogy you use of the gift being in the wrapping and the ribbon reminds me that, so often, children play with more pleasure with the box that the toy came in than with the toy itself. It’s all in one’s perception as to what is and what isn’t a gift. In so many good stories, challenges have to be overcome before a goal can be attained. And stories – good and bad – remind me of that most valuable of all gifts – imagination.
Currently my o...
Currently my only chronically challenging situation is being human – it hurts so often. No one gets through it without sorrow. And with sorrow I need to find a way back to joy and usually I just have to Stop Look and Go to find gratefulness and then joy naturally follows.
I may be wrong* but I think it was Thomas Merton who wrote the prayer: ”Thank You for all you have given me; thank You for all You have taken from me; thank You for all you have left me.” Gratefulness is embodied in this.
* Please feel free to correct me if I’m wrong!
I am so sorry to hear this Michele. My heart goes out to you. May you find at least some comfort from family and friends. Blessings.
Thanks for your sweet message Antoinette.
It is very distressing especially when it’s a young person. As to causes, sometimes it’s unknown but in the ones I know of, it has been connected with substance abuse and, obviously, mental health problems – often ascribed to cyber bullying.
There is a major government initiative to reduce the numbers by increasing community awareness resources, and the total numbers have fallen slightly, but the cases under 24 years old h...
There is a major government initiative to reduce the numbers by increasing community awareness resources, and the total numbers have fallen slightly, but the cases under 24 years old have increased. The statistics seem to be very slowly compiled but I don’t know why that is.
Peace love and joy to you and all contributors. xx
Dear Anna: I feel your pain and grief. Thank you for sharing them. I hope your father’s illness progresses very very slowly. Peace, joy and love.
Oh Diane! Thank you so much for this. I especially appreciate these lines that remind me of the “challenge to love” people and circumstances that are -ahem- NOT TO MY LIKING!
In every enemy that seems to cross our path,
thou art there within the cloud to challenge us to love.
Although I am a Scot by birth and I thought I was fairly well educated in the old songs and poetry of my native land, until today I was completely unaware of this Norman MacLeod. I have spent t...
Although I am a Scot by birth and I thought I was fairly well educated in the old songs and poetry of my native land, until today I was completely unaware of this Norman MacLeod. I have spent the last hour requesting information on him from the Google Oracle to discover that there have been several poets of that name. I think this must be Norman MacLeod (1783-1862) also known as Caraid nan Gàidheal (The friend of the Gael).
But I can’t find the poem you are quoting “in part”. I would love to find the source, so if you can point me in the right direction I would be most grateful. Beannachdan! (Blessings in Gaelic.)
You express so eloquently what I felt, Cathy. Tanx!
Thank you for the beautiful journey you took us through with your post, Anneclaire. I hope you feel better soon. xx
Thanks for your encouragement Michele. Blessings.
Thanks Dusty Su for the links etc. I’ll check out in the programs in Scotland if I can. I’m originally from there and I have 2 sisters and their families there and loads of school-friends with whom I reconnected 14 years ago… so shouldn’t be too difficult. If you know which counties offer the training, that would be helpful too.
There was a great training for volunteers where I was living in Canada, although I don’t know if it exists in every province...
There was a great training for volunteers where I was living in Canada, although I don’t know if it exists in every province.
You have truly inspired me today. I look forward to Sept 1st!
You have obviously been using your forced quarantine productively! Blessings today and always, xx
I’d love to read that, Dusty Su when it’s finished if that is possible.
I was a hospice volunteer when I lived in Canada, and visited the terminally ill and dying in their own homes. Unfortunately there isn’t such a program in Ireland where I now live. I did try to instigate it when I came here 14 years ago, but to no avail.
My instincts tell me that your presentation would help me to resurrect my proposal.
Blessings for doing this.
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