The spiritual life does not remove us from the world but leads us deeper into it. – Henri J. M. Nouwen
I admittedly struggle in my life’s work as a global educator. The systemic issues of poverty, suffering and inhumane labor practices at times shackle my heart and mind with an unbending futility.
I must constantly move into some form of mental reconciliation, referring to Jesus’ instruction to be in the world but not of it. None of us see, hear or experience the entirety of infinite intelligence at play, what some would call our infinite karmic blueprint. We only see what’s in front of us through our limited physical vision. I falter when responding from "in the world" perspective without partnering with what Ram Dass termed "keeping your heart open in hell". Faith makes the suffering bearable; action helps the sufferer.
The cultivation of a compassionate heart requires it to be both broken and operational. It’s like the monk who is...
We become what we love and who we love shapes what we become. – Saint Clare of Assisi
In a recent airline magazine article, a biologist shared his research on the migration of monarch butterflies and their winter resting place – a forest in the state of Michoacan in Mexico.
It detailed the remarkable sojourn that millions of monarchs make and how climate change challenges are disrupting their flight pattern and overall survival. Assisted in his research by native guides through the heavily forested region, the author shared a profound experience he observed between a guide and a single butterfly. Upon discovering a female drowning in a puddle, weak and freezing, the guide held the distressed insect in his hand to provide warmth. Next, he began tenderly feeding the winged beauty by squeezing nectar from a flower into her mouth.
The butterfly drank the contents of four flowers, regained her strength and flittered away.
Being an available channel for...