An instrument of peace

“Lord, make me an instrument of peace.”

With that single line St Francis defined a life of mindfulness and loving kindness long before those terms were first used. Long before pop culture turned them into an industry. A t-shirt slogan.

He goes on to describe how that instrument looks. It is one of understanding and giving. A life in service of love.

“Lord make me an instrument of peace

Where there is hatred let me sow love

Where there is injury, pardon

Where there is doubt, faith

Where there is despair, hope

Where there is darkness, light

And where there is sadness, joy

Oh divine master grant that I may

not so much seek to be consoled as to console

to be understood as to understand

To be loved as to love

For it is in giving that we receive

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned

It is in dying that we are born to eternal life”

This is how I want my life to be yet I often fail in these intentions. Instead, I want to be understood. To be consoled. To wade deeply in my sorrow. To be loved despite my shortcomings.

When I find myself on the needy end of the spectrum that runs from giving to receiving I remember that I can not only offer these gifts to myself, I should.

My efforts to be an instrument of peace must begin with myself because to offer peace to others I must first have it within me. The good news is that inner peace is often gained in the offering of it to others. It is a beautiful, endless, self-sustaining circle.

This was my meditation this morning:

That I forgive myself and not beat myself up for being human.

That I keep strong the faith that brought me here.

That I keep the flame of hope ever burning within me to light both bright days and dark nights.

That I be willing to find and feed my joy, especially when it seems so far away.

That I love myself as I wish to be loved by others and that I share that love regardless of my pain.

That peace isn’t just something we feel, it’s something we practice.

I believe I need more practice.

Peace be upon you.

After a long day

Buno.Lemos

It’s okay, Love
It’s okay
Lean back into me
Let me wrap my arms around you
Rock you gently
Kiss your neck
Silence the day
With wordless passion
As we watch the Moon
Now round and full
Light the clouds that gather
and will away the worry
With love

 


Image by Bruno Lemos

Timeless

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Time is as often friend as foe. It flows steadily. Never ending. We can tell ourselves that it is an illusion. That only “Now” exists. But that’s a half truth. Now is the only place we exist but we live in a progression of time. In our human form we have a beginning and an end. We are born, we live, we die. What happens in between is a combination of circumstances and events guided by will or careless indifference and interpreted by intention and understanding or misunderstanding.

I chose to embrace that knowledge some time back. To acknowledge that I had a beginning. That this body will at some point fail. That how I live now is entirely up to me. Not everyone gets that choice. Some are born into short and brutal lives. Some never get the chance to live at all.

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring. I see glimpses from time to time. Beautiful sunrises and sunsets in the arms of my Beloved. Compassionate days that flow into passionate nights. A flow of energy between us that builds and shares and expands. Perpetual. Timeless.

I want those things.

Time, however, often chooses the pace and, thus, can affect the quality of Now… if we allow it to. Plans made need to be shuffled again and again before they can be implemented and even then I must remain flexible to last second alterations.

This is where I am now: Making the best of unexpected changes. Unexpected changes making the best of me. Guiding the future with intention and understanding with one difference, mutual desire.

Not the base and often destructive sexual or sensual desire of immature love, though certainly that exists, how can it not? I do desire the physical connection of my lover. Intensely. More than that, however, is the desire to give and receive love. Physical. Emotional. Psychological. Spiritual. To create something together under the guidance of those intentions of compassion, connection, union, care, growth, and so much more that I so often describe as simply “love and gratitude” and through those intentions build something lasting. Eternal. Timeless.

Today the flow of Now across which time passes and at the edge of which I exist is both friend and seeming foe. It prevents immediate satisfaction of our goals. Blocks access to the woman I love. But every second that passes brings me ever closer to her and to Divine Union with her. In this it can only be considered friend.

I could focus on the obstacles or focus on the goal. The choice is made easy by these facts:

The obstacles are temporary.

Love is timeless.

I choose love.

 


 

Image: from the “Timeless” series by Moe Shirani

a moment in eternity

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you are in the kitchen
while I sit in silence in the other room
releasing my thoughts
and the energy that carried me through the day
soft music plays
a bluesy roughness
with hypnotic beat
that draws me near
I come up behind you
pull you close
kiss your neck
pull you close while touching you gently
with purpose
my hand raises to your heart
the focus of my attention
as I lightly caress the base of your spine
I offer the life that flows
from your heart to mine
expand on it
return it to each chakra
one by one
as I whisper love
reassure you
guide our energy with my hand
as I reach Vissudha
I replace my hand, now moved to your belly, with a kiss
then lower my hand to your pelvis
seeking pleasure and finding it there
I rest my head against yours
seeing Ajna light up
feel our crown, now joined,
freely pass our energy back and forth between us
a perpetual, growing light
as I breathe you in
feeling you fill me
and returning it
to fill you
with a peaceful calm
with life
with love
I hold you close
knowing
this is but a moment in eternity

 

What you deserve

Life has been hard on you. It has given you challenges you never expected. Pushed you to do things you never thought you would do. It has kicked you when you were down. Stomped on you. At some point it convinced you that you are unworthy. Less than perfect.

Yet here you are, embracing those imperfections. Finding strength in courage and hope. You are authentic. Unafraid to be vulnerable. Honest with others and with yourself. Compassionate. When life knocks you down you simply get back up and proclaim, “You hit like a bitch.”

You have uncaged your wild nature and embraced the divine feminine.

You are a goddess.

You deserve the worship and love of a warrior. A god.

He will support you. Go out of his way to show his appreciation and his love in every way he can. He will dance with you while doing dishes. Kiss you long and deep without reason. Ride the stupid spirit wagon with you at your kids football game just because you are on it.

He will caringly touch and lovingly kiss all those areas, physical, mental, spiritual, that are hard for you to reach or uncomfortable for you to touch alone.

When you are down he will help you up. When you are up he will raise you higher. When life hands you shit he will make fertilizer from it, plant seeds in it, wash it from you, and put you to bed with soft words and hard passion.

He will reflect those things in you that make you a goddess without fear. You will see yourself in him and you will like what you see. You can be vulnerable around him because he will never take advantage of you. Never use your vulnerability against you. Because he is also vulnerable.

He will bring out the best in you by being his best. Only his best is good enough for you.

He will encourage and help you to grow and in doing so grow with you. Not separately. Not as competition. Together. As One.

He will do these things because he wants to. Not because he needs to. Not because he feels obligated. Because he wants to. He wants to because he loves you.

You are a goddess, you deserve to be loved like one.

 

 

 

Image: “The Fountain of Love” by Jean Honoré Fragonard, c. 1785

Home

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after a lifetime of drifting
on this empty sea
carried by winds
of misfortune
and currents
of indecision
past welcoming shores
and island oasis
where the promise of life
is witnessed
but unfulfilled
this tiny tattered raft
cursed home for far too long
tossed on waves
of my own making
that crash and pound
threatening to upset
the tenuous balance
of need and desire
once sustained
by faith in a wisdom
greater than my own
now settles to calmer seas
fanned by a wind
of Divine intervention
to keep steady course
by tenacious degrees
of hope
will
courage
and conviction
to beach upon the paradisaical coast
of an island named
Beloved
where the oceans turbulent breath
settles to an intimate whisper
of affection
the waves dance tenderly
on halcyon shores
lit by fires of passion
and the sun shimmers
on rippled depths
teaming with life
I set my foot on stable ground
the path revealed in a touch
advance to a berth
with solid foundations
of care and compassion
far inland
from the tempest of my past
I enter with calm chaos
this new home
so familiar
by the hearth
in the glow of Eros
true love stands
eyes teared
arms wide
heart open
soul ablaze
I step into her embrace
my mind is set to ease
my soul finds connection
my heart beats again
and I know
I am
at last
Home

 

Image: “Home” by Joe Maccer

 

Time and Love

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Time. For many years I thought I would have enough time to do all the things I wanted to do. Hike the Continental Divide. Sail to the Galapagos. Explore pre-Mayan ruins.

For most of those years I literally avoided those things. I put myself in situations that made achieving them impossible.

Today, I want none of them. Sure, it would be great to take 6 months to hike the CDT, but it’s no longer at the top of my list. Something far more important and meaningful is; Love.

At the same time that I was avoiding those physical accomplishments I was also largely avoiding the spiritual as well and there is nothing more spiritual than Love.

For the last several years I have focused entirely on those spiritual needs. Learning who I was, who I am, and who I am meant to be. Learning how to love and be loved. How to embrace compassion. To forgive. To be grateful. All of these are forms of Love.

I’m not saying none of those things existed before, they do in all of us to some extent, only that I learned how to do them right. With purpose. Intention. It’s one thing to love, it’s an entirely different thing to Love with intention.

Loving intentionally means to love beyond the constraints of emotion. It is a deep, spiritual love that affects everything I do from the moment I wake to the last second of my waking day. It is something I share with everyone I encounter. Everyone.

It is a good way to live. Love is it’s own reward.

I won’t regret that it’s taken so long for me to discover these things because I have discovered and learned them  Many people do not.

I do, however, wish I had taken the time to learn them sooner because they have made my life better. Made other people’s lives better.

If there is one lesson above all others that I would share it is this: You do not have enough time. Not for everything.

Nor is it ever too late.

Choose well the things you want in life and from life and to give to life.

And put Love on the top of the list.