Derek is away

Sorry for the lack of “Daily Thoughts” – but I’m not at the computer for a few days – more WILL be revealed………

June 28 Daily Meditation Writing: Garden

You are reading the ongoing writing process for a new book of daily reflections/meditations. Already published by this author is “Cast A Long Shadow”, 90 daily reading for our journey through life. This book is available direct from the publisher, and also on Amazon.comAmazon.co.uk and other Amazon European sites

Garden

A garden – or a yard as some call it – can be a blessing or a curse.

Sometimes, we can go all out to make our garden perfect, and get real enjoyment from the effort, no matter what results we get.

But sometimes, that pursuit for perfection becomes more of a chore than an enjoyment – just one more thing that we have to achieve, and one more thing to fail at.

On the other hand, we may decide that we want to go low maintenance, and just have a space for sitting and entertaining.

Taken to an extreme, however, this just leads to an unkempt and untidy plot, that we are ashamed to call our own.

In many ways, how we look after a garden is an analogy for how we look after the all of our lives.

So we consider that we have to excel, that we have to abide by some rule book that others have written, we can easily turn this into just another way to compare ourselves with others.

And when we compare we always loss out, because we are not the other person – we are just uniquely us.

Or we can take no pride in ourselves at all, and just exist in whatever situation we find ourselves.

When we do this, we end up dispirited because there seems nothing good in our world.

The weeds and the garbage pile up around us, and we seem incapable of escaping from the bit that we have created.

But – like the person who enjoys their garden – there are other options.

We can try our best for perfection, but enjoy what we get instead.

Maybe we want a better job – but in the mean time, we do the best at the one we have because it gives us self-esteem to do so.

We remember that we are uniquely us, and celebrate our own selves, and so do the things that bring us contentment and fulfillment, even if these are not what others “expect” of us.

A garden can be a refuge from the stress of life.

The stress of life can be reduced if we cultivate a garden in our soul.

 

June 27 Daily Meditation Writing: Celebration

You are reading the ongoing writing process for a new book of daily reflections/meditations. Already published by this author is “Cast A Long Shadow”, 90 daily reading for our journey through life. This book is available direct from the publisher, and also on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Cerebration

We all like to celebrate.

A birthday, an anniversary, a new child – we all of us see the need to mark the event with some form of recognition.

And I the public arena, we have commemorative times specifically set aside specifically – Thanksgiving, New Year; each country and culture has its national days to come together and celebrate.

And so it seems to many of us that it is these “big” things that can be celebrated – that a celebration needs to be undertaken only for the public or shared things.

My feeling is that we should celebrate everything that is special.

We should celebrate the public holidays, and the anniversaries and high days in our lives.

But we should also celebrate all of the good things in our lives, even the “smaller” things that are around us.

When a child is born that is a reason for celebration, as is their first step, their first tooth, and so on. But each day that they wake in the morning is a reason for celebration that we get to spend one more day with this magic bundle of growth.

A wedding anniversary is a good time to celebrate the good things that have happened in the marriage, but each day can be a celebration of their continuing love.

Moving into a new house often calls for a house-warming celebration, but every day that the walls keep us safe and the roof keeps us dry is another day to celebrate having a home.

There will be times when there seems little to celebrate.

When things are tough at work, and we seem to have no time to ourselves.

Or when a tragedy strikes us or those we love, it is hard to see the good, or even to believe that the cloud has a silver lining.

But even in times of struggle, there will always be something that we can celebrate – even just that we got through another day, another hour, another breath.

And when we look for the reasons to celebrate, the gloom can lift for us, and our journey is just that bit lighter.

Not everything that happens to us is wonderful, but we can find the wonderful in everything that happens, and celebrate it.

 

June 26 Daily Meditation Writing: Concern

You are reading the ongoing writing process for a new book of daily reflections/meditations. Already published by this author is “Cast A Long Shadow”, 90 daily reading for our journey through life. This book is available direct from the publisher, and also on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Concern

The things that concern us are very individual.

Some people are concerned, for example, about their outward appearance, and always want to look the best they can, no matter if anyone can see them or not.

Others really seem not to care about how they look, and can turn up at a formal occasion dressed in their oldest clothes and think nothing of it.

In our personal lives too, we see that different people have different concerns.

Some will be really involved with others, and want to help them at all costs, while others seem only to be interested in themselves.

But what should really concern us?

It is easy for all of us to get caught up in the minutia of life – to see only the trees around us, and not the forest that we walk through.

Our real concern should be in those things that promote our well-being and our journey through life.

It is fine to worry about what we wear, as long as that outward show is not all that we are concerned with.

It is fine to not worry about the clothes we wear, but if our lack of concern there spills over into other areas of looking after ourselves, we could be heading for trouble.

Helping others is a wonderful and worthwhile way to spend our time, but we should not be so concerned with others’ development that we fail to grow ourselves.

And we should look after our own needs, but also we need to be concerned that we do not hurt others, and that we help them wherever we can.

In all of these things, it is not so much the action, or lack of action, that is of concern, but our motives.

Does this concern help or hinder us in our quest for a more fulfilling life?

What needs to concern us is not so much what we see in the here and now, but the effect this will have on us and our journey.

Our best concern is that we do the best we can, where we are.

 

June 24 Daily Meditation Writing: Plenty

You are reading the ongoing writing process for a new book of daily reflections/meditations. Already published by this author is “Cast A Long Shadow”, 90 daily reading for our journey through life. This book is available direct from the publisher, and also on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Plenty

All of us have plenty.

In this world many of us strive for money or success, but find that we really cannot get “enough”.

There is never enough money to meet all our wants, because our wants can go on expanding.

There is always something more that we could do with money, so if we look foe success that way, there will always be more we could do.

And I’m not just talking about buying things – even if we decided to give to charity, or set up a foundation, there will always be more that could be given, more needs that could be met.

But, whilst we will never have “enough”, we can have plenty, because there may be more, but we don’t need it.

When we look at our needs, not our wants, we can get to a stage of having plenty.

Lets say that I live in a three bedroom house, and I want to get a bigger one.

Looking at it this way, I need to see if I can afford the price and the upkeep, and be discouraged because I am unable to afford that extra bedroom that I so desire.

And yet, looking at it from the perspective of need, my 3 rooms may well be plenty.

I have enough to meet the needs that I have – more than that, I have them and can enjoy them, my cup id full.

There may be times when what we have is not enough, when to strive for more is indeed the right thing to do.

If I am living in cramped conditions, and have the ability to improve my situation, I am not saying that I should just ignore my need.

But when we only look at what we don’t have, we become discontent; our wants are always going to be bigger than what we have.

But when we look at what we do have, we can see that we have plenty.

Having plenty is as much a state of mind as a physical thing.

Happiness comes not from getting what we want, but from recognizing that what we have is plenty.

 

June 23 Daily Meditation Writing: Imagination

You are reading the ongoing writing process for a new book of daily reflections/meditations. Already published by this author is “Cast A Long Shadow”, 90 daily reading for our journey through life. This book is available direct from the publisher, and also on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Physical

We all live part of our lives in a physical world.

You will read much in these pages about the spiritual side of our lives, and how life is a journey.

And that is true, and a good counter to the continual portrayal of life as just a procession of possessions.

But life is also lived on the physical level.

I can be as spiritual as anything, but if I am tired or dehydrated, I will not be able to think many spiritual thoughts.

In order that I may continue along the path that my life is leading me, I need to be able to keep my body working correctly, and that means spending some time attending to the needs of my body.

And there are some who would tell us that thisis all we need do – that just to “keep the machinery running” is all that we should expect from our physical life.

And yet, in the physical I can find a lot that is spiritual.

Watching a sunset, for example, is a physical and spiritual experience.

The actual photons of light are coming towards me, and my brain is interpreting those patterns as a sunset.

My eyes are automatically adjusting their aperture to adjust for the changing amount of light, just as my brain is processing the signals it receives.

And, at the same time, a part of me is experiencing that physical action, and feeling it on a different level.

My physical heart may be continuing to beat its regular beat, but my spirit is singing and rejoicing at the sight.

So it is with other physical sensations and happenings.

We are not mere recording machines, that not the physical and move on to the next sensation.

Rather we are inner beings, whose life can be exalted by the physical around us.

We are spiritual beings in a physical body, and must make the most of the experiences the physical can give us.

 

June 22 Daily Meditation Writing: Imagination

You are reading the ongoing writing process for a new book of daily reflections/meditations. Already published by this author is “Cast A Long Shadow”, 90 daily reading for our journey through life. This book is available direct from the publisher, and also on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Imagination

Having an imagination is one of the great blessings of being Human. It is also one of the curses.

Our imaginations can help us achieve great things, because if we can imagine it, we can make it happen.

Most great advances in life are the result of someone seeing how the world is, and imagining a better one.

And having imagines a better solution, or a better way of living, they have gone on to work at a way of achieving that goal, often working hard and long until their dream is fulfilled.

In seemingly lessor ways, we all use our imagination for the better.

We may look at the area around our house, and see in our imagining how it would look with different flowers and bushes.

Having thought about how it could look, we go and buy plants and seeds and dig up the old weeds we had there, ready for our new plants.

And we work at the gardening year after year, talking pleasure in our successes and learning from our failures, each year getting closer to the imagined “perfect” space.

But there is also a darker side to having an imagination.

Sometimes, when presented with a decision to make, or a task to be undertaken, we can only imagine the bad outcomes that could happen.

Or we imagine that people are whispering about us behind our backs, or are plotting against us, when this is not true.

At these times our imagination can keep us trapped.

We are afraid to move on because of the imagined problems that might happen, and yet we can see right in the here and now that our lives are far from perfect.

This imagining stops us from even trying, or of we try, makes us timorous and scared of defeat.

When we find our imagination turning on us in this way, it can be hard to change – but change we can.

Because if it is possible to imagine a bad outcome, so it is also possible to imagine a good one.

Sometimes we need to exercise our will power explicitly to stop our imaginations running the show.

And we don’t need to imagine the future at all.

All we have is now, and the future is an illusion.