how you align to you

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You must have felt it
once or twice yourself
an early winter morning
as the sun tilts slowly
above the vale of earth

bird wings flap fiercely
slicing the sky as it turns
from lavender to blue
your heart a moth
fluttering in a jar

and for a moment you are
so in love with this world
everything is possible
your skin no longer barrier
but portal to communion

like St. Teresa in her moment
of ecstasy, Seraphim with a
golden spear clearing her out
for love, feet bare, head tilted back,
a moan escapes her lips,

rhapsody, relish, swoon
even when the angel recedes
as her tasks call her back
she can still taste bliss in her
pomegranate mouth

and there are glimpses of paradise
even on rain-soaked days
a sun still gleams
among the half-cut lemons,
the egg yolk, my wedding band.

~Christine Valters Paintner

who inspires you to be the best you? how do you move away from being who you are not meant to be?

inquiry for today~   how will you reframe what you are to do this week as a way of leaving a legacy? of leading by example?

what is most uncomfortable?

Many traditional societies believe that the Four Rivers of Life- Inspiration, Challenge, Surprise, and Love- sustain and support us, and connect us to great gifts. They also believe that if we fail to stay connected to these rivers, we succumb to “walking the procession of the living dead” and begin to experience soul loss, depression, stagnation, or other manifestations of acedia (spiritual apathy).

The River of Inspiration reveals where we are in touch with our creative fire and our life dream. The River of Challenge calls us to stretch and grow beyond what is knowable or familiar. The River of Surprise keeps us fluid and flexible, and requires us to open to options and possibilities that we may not have considered.

The River of Love shows us here we are touched and moved by life’s experience.

The wisdom gift at this gate is generativity: the capacity to guide the next generation by engaging in meaningful altruistic acts carried out with integrity. This gift is a growing, selfless, creative involvement in community life and service. We harvest what we have sown, reflect upon our contribution, and consider what still yearns to be expressed within us.

Generativity gives us new meaning and purpose in the second half of life. We experience liberation from the three obstacles to our full creative expression- fixed psychological patterns, fixed ideas, and unresolved family and social situations- that are the doors to acedia. Instead we shift our commitment and allegiance to the Four Rivers of Life. As a result, our actions are brought into focus and our creative contributions can align with what is truly important.

~Angeles Arrien

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