Taking a moment to just … be …

Last Sunday was a stressful day. It was one of many.

Sometimes life travels too fast. The plate becomes full to overflowing. Carrying a load of worry and frustration can become oppressive.

Time to off load my burden … time to take out the kayak. Continue reading “Taking a moment to just … be …”

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Fun Facts Friday: Nature from an app, powerful women, movie gotta-see, circus cats & more!

Ever wanted to bring the outdoors in, especially to your office?

USA, New York City, Central Park, Scenic waterfall
USA, New York City, Central Park, Scenic waterfall

Listening To Nature Sounds At Work Can Boost Your Mood And Productivity: Listening to the sound of crashing waves or a babbling brook isn’t just useful for helping you fall asleep — it may also help you to focus at work.

You can download an app for that!

WHITE NOISE
WHITE NOISE

* * * * * * * * * * *
Who makes history, and why?
And who are the top ten most powerful women in the world, and why?
Check out Forbes most powerful women list

* * * * * * * * * * *

Speaking of powerful women, anyone know who this is?

arabella mansfield

Hint: Think Alan Dershowitz in a dress …

* * * * * * * * * * *

And yeah, I want to see this movie:

* * * * * * * * * * *

on the kayaking front …

lewis and clark

Lewis and Clark go Urban Kayaking

* * * * * * * * * * *

You think cats can’t be trained to perform? Check this out:

circus cat
The Amazing Acro-Cats: the touring circus that proves cats can be trained

* * * * * * * * * * *

But no all cats are so cooperative (and I don’t blame the first one at all!)

Puyallup’s Siegfried and Roy?
Cats can turn wild when these groomers go to work

That’s it for this week.
Do you have a fun fact link to share?
Write me and I’ll share it with next week’s Fun Facts Friday!

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Fun Facts Friday: Nature from an app, powerful women, movie gotta-see, circus cats and more!

Ever wanted to bring the outdoors in, especially to your office?

USA, New York City, Central Park, Scenic waterfall
USA, New York City, Central Park, Scenic waterfall

Listening To Nature Sounds At Work Can Boost Your Mood And Productivity: Listening to the sound of crashing waves or a babbling brook isn’t just useful for helping you fall asleep — it may also help you to focus at work. Continue reading “Fun Facts Friday: Nature from an app, powerful women, movie gotta-see, circus cats and more!”

Fun Facts Friday: from Kayaking to Babs to Jackson Galaxy and beyond!

 Fun Facts Friday is back! Lots of great stuff this week:

kayaking in the front yardOn the kayaking front …

There’s been a drought on west of epic proportions when it finally did rain, check out how this man celebrated!
Kayaking in his front yard!
Continue reading “Fun Facts Friday: from Kayaking to Babs to Jackson Galaxy and beyond!”

Finding the mystic in me

Today I started reading a book entitled The Naked Now by Richard Rohr. I originally planned on reading it because a group I belong to, the Commission of Women of the Diocese of Worcester, chose this book as the one they wished to study this year. A dear friend of mine, a deacon in the Catholic Church, had also highly recommended it.

Rohr aims to teach the reader to see as the mystics see.

I have long resisted the notion of being a mystic though this same friend insisted that I be open to the idea. The pragmatist in me, the one who is unimpressed with splashy theatrics and celebrity, would have nothing to do with it. I saw no connection between my earthly life and supposed “heavenly visions.” I mistakenly connected mysticism with crying statues; I wanted nothing to do with it.

However, the creative in me, now being regularly exercised with reading and study, began to speak up and say,

“Hold on a minute. Maybe there is more to this than meets the eye.”

And my inner self, also exercised daily with prayer and reflection, objected too.

The Naked Now is now affirming something I’ve been experiencing ever since I started all this exercising: this newfound ability to “read between the lines,” and it is growing exponentially.

Rohr spells out three ways to view the world through a simple example: how three people view a sunset. One simply enjoys the beauty, nothing more. A second enjoys the beauty and understands the science behind a sunset, giving him extra insight.

The third not only appreciates the beauty and perhaps the science, but also “tastes” the experience. His vision enables him to transcend the physical experience to something mystical.

Rohr calls this seeing with the “third eye.” And I knew exactly what he meant.

I experienced that kind of vision all summer long in my lunchtime walks through the woods, past streams and alongside the lake at Wellesley College. Some of these experiences were quite intense, most especially my kayak trip on Lake Waban.

And I had noticed this vision even before the summer.

Reading the Bible had always been a difficult and dry experience. I simply could not understand what it was trying to tell me. However, last year I began to experience a strange sensation while reading: my mind and my heart would be literally flooded with ideas and insights. It was thrilling and a little scary. It was like God was chattering at me!

I don’t remember when I began acquiring this “third eye” but I am guessing it is connected to a few newer habits in my life: challenging reading, journaling and blogging, and set times for prayer. (This blog is a result of those new habits.)

I allowed myself to be carried in the flow of God’s will, just like my kayak floats down river. I went with the flow and without realizing it, accepted an invitation from God to go deeper with my faith.

I didn’t really know what was happening but had a sense that it was better to just “go with it” rather than to question.

And now, I have a book that will explain what’s been happening.

And the best part is, you can experience this too.

Everyone is called to be a mystic. It’s what Jesus intended. It was not just for those saints we see commemorated in statues and prayer cards.

Jesus means for each of us to experience this “third eye,” a direct result of a close, intimate relationship with Him.

The closer we get, the better we see.

And that’s when life really starts to take off. Surrounded by and immersed fully in this Divine love, we can experience what Henri Nouwen wrote in that post I highlighted the other day, “It is in the heart of God that we can come to the full realisation of the unity of all that is, created and uncreated.”

We can Be As One.

You can find The Naked Now on Amazon. Treat yourself, and then tell me what you think!

Click to Tweet & Share: Could you be a mystic? Do you want to be?  I didn’t think I did until I found out I was one … http://wp.me/p2D9hg-iK

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Close encounters of the Bird kind

Kayaking is such a great way to sneak up on birds! Here’s a couple I was able to capture in a picture. The setting is Mill Pond in Westborough, MA. This place never disappoints!

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Click to Tweet & Share: Close encounters of the Bird kind http://wp.me/p2D9hg-ag

 

Frodo and Hobbiton: Kayaking on Lake Waban at Wellesley College

Easily the best trip of the season. Can’t wait to come back!

This was a trip to fairyland, to everything I imagined Hobbiton to be.

It was hard to leave, reminding me of the great courage Frodo Baggins demonstrated in forsaking all this beauty to set out on his quest.

His life’s flow brought him to extreme danger, ugliness, terror and ultimately, heroics.

He had the courage to let his river carry him.

Kayaking has shown me in a graphic way how to let my river carry me. Some of the time the trip is bucolic, like this one to Lake Waban at Wellesley College.

Other times the water gets rough and it can get dangerous.

For today though, I want to share photos of a trip that was easily the best of this season. The conditions were perfect (90+ degree day, sunny and breezy) and the lake was teaming with families/clusters of birds.

Enjoy the beauty and see if you can imagine your river.

Click to Tweet & Share: Kayaking teaches me lessons about life and letting my river carry me http://wp.me/p2D9hg-10

em space

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