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One Day at a Time

"God, Goddess, and all that represents love and light, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." - The Serenity Prayer

These are the words that ride on my inbreath and outbreath.

I feel so deeply it hurts to be human and at the same time the hurt is being human.

These words grant me a feeling of peace and a reminder to accept what I cannot control. To let go of the grip I have on my expectations.

These words remind me to use my courage to take next steps.

Sometimes next steps are just breathing and waiting.

Remembering to grant myself kindness and kindness to others no matter who they are.

I pray for the discernment to know when I accept and when I act.

Life is hard.

Humanity is reacting.

Humanity is waiting.

Humanity is watching.

Humanity is learning to feel its heart center.

Humanity is opening to higher consciousness

Humanity is growing into knowing we are all One.

Humanity is recognizing living in denial is not working.

Humanity is waking up to the impermanence of death.

Humanity is experiencing the reality of being in the present.

I and myself are One

I am committed to Oneness

I practice presence every day

I breathe in love and breathe out acceptance

I forgive myself when I stumble off my pathway

I trust as humanity moves through stages, I can breathe easier

I am a member of humanity and my commitment to myself strengthens us all.

I find solace in my breath. I am one with my breath. I am grateful for my breath.

Sometimes, all you can do is breathe.

And breathe again.

You let the breath carry you,

because you cannot carry yourself.

You cannot find trust, so you just breathe.

Hope seems far away, so you just breathe.

And none of your usual distractions work.

So you just breathe.

You give yourself to life.

You find solace in not knowing.

You keep going, because the breath itself keeps going,

and you don’t know how.

You stop trying.

Or you become the breath itself.

You become air, the essence of things.

You become the vastness of space, feather-light afternoon clouds moving through infinite blue, playful evening birds on their way to destinations unknown, planets spinning melancholically in eternal night.

Crying, laughing, not knowing anything anymore.

You become all who have ever suffered.

You become all who have ever died, or fallen into ruin.

You touch that ancient Silence, born billions of years before Earth, rock solid amidst these changes.

Sometimes all you can do is breathe.

And breathe again.

Participants’ Reflections:

  • I just wanted to simply say that was such a beautiful reading and poem. I know I’m going to go back to it and re-read it. Thank you for all of it. It really, really got to me.

  • As I was sitting in meditation, I was drawing a correlation between the time when I finally accepted that my daughter had liver disease. I thought by my acceptance I would be giving up and becoming a doormat to it. The opposite happened. The struggling stopped inside of me that went on day after day. I’m thinking about that in relation to this time when I keep trying to understand what’s going to happen next in this world, why people are doing what they are doing. Maybe I just have to accept the way the world is now and just breathe.

  • I found myself roiled today and I thought how the surface of the ocean is often choppy and confused and seems chaotic. Then I remembered I read once about these enormous waves that circulate from the deep ocean to the not deep ocean so they never break the surface but always cycling. I thought it’s like my breath or like some pulse that’s deep within me that’s always there. So I was feeling like I was not connecting and I was reminded it’s always there. Just try to let go of the attachment to the surface confusion.

  • Thanks for reminding me of that cycle. I connected with it when you were talking about it.

  • Thank you for that poem, just breathe, just breathe. That image of the ocean’s waves and feeling confused. To give an example, I usually put eyeliner on my eyes with a black pencil. Today, not being mindful, I picked up one of my drawing pencils, wondering why isn’t this working? I looked at it -- it’s charcoal, and I realized I’m not paying attention. I was reminded of an exercise I found in a little book—bring your energy down and up like a circle around you, a different circle. I’m going to practice that today and not put on makeup.

  • I understand the feeling of powerlessness and I love that you mentioned the serenity prayer. To me, the big question is ‘the wisdom to know the difference.’ As I was meditating, I was thinking of the power within myself and I did my normal energizing practice with my whole body, and thinking about the wisdom to know the difference. Suddenly, I felt this energy going straight up from my head, this tower of power. It’s in me, you just have to figure out where to direct it.

  • Tower of Power!!! LOVE it!

  • Thank you so much for your words and reading this morning. I heard a woman share once in a circle that the most important words for her were the first three: god/goddess grant me. I am inviting, I am asking. It’s more than an invitation, there should be a connection. Your reading reminded me of something someone said at a meeting: he talked about anthropologists who were observing what they thought was the truly last indigenous culture left on this Earth. The tribal members, as they went about their tasks, very randomly, would freeze like a statue for a variable amount of time. They asked their guide what was going on. He said that in that culture, life happens so fast that we need to stop and let our spirit catch up. That’s what breath is for me. Unless I use breath like that, I cannot connect, I am too blocked.

  • Thank you. As usual that reading was spot on. I look forward to this group everyday.

  • Thank you for that reading, so powerful. Thank you for the reminder about the ocean’s deep conveyor belt. It’s those deep waters that matter. I am reminded today of Gandhi’s seven social sins. One of them is knowledge without character. You reminded me today, with knowledge of what is happening today, I get to chose the character of who I want to be. Do I want to be spiteful or kind? No matter what is happening, no matter what anyone is doing. I get to choose to live with knowledge with character, a loving presence with everyone in my life and everyone on the planet.

  • I started thinking about the physical process of grieving, how complex it is, how it gets intertwined with our environment. Then I thought about breathing in consciousness, breathing out consciousness. Breathing in energy, breathing out energy. It’s another level.

  • During meditation, I think. And my thinking is supportive of me. It’s another example that we are merging our hearts with our minds, and we work together because our minds can be so supportive and bring awareness.

  • Thank you for the blessings of your presence, your wisdom, your time. I hope you all have an aware day with kindness and gentleness for yourselves.

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