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In thinking about perspective this morning, I found these words by Oprah Winfrey.

“What if you were willing to see your whole life differently—from the 35,000-foot view? What if you could see everything you’ve been through, everything you’ve stood up to, every time you’ve fallen and rebounded, every curve ball you were thrown and caught? Every time you were disappointed and didn’t stoop to despair. Every victory, every chance. And appreciate the fact that you’re still here, still standing, still striving for a better life.”
“I hope you give yourself a round of applause for making it this far. And then see yourself as a part of the whole of this planet.”
“What gifts have you to offer? What was your reason for coming? What I know for sure: The answers keep unfolding as your life expands, if you’re willing to see things for what they are—and what they can be.”

This is a familiar poem I’d like to share as well by Linda Ellis:

How Do You Live Your Dash I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning ... to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke of the following date with tears. But he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth. And now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth.

For it matter not how much we own; the cars ... the house ... the cash. What matters is how we live and love ... and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard; are there things you'd like to change? For you never know how much time is left that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough to consider what's true and real ... And always try to understand the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger, and show appreciation more. And love the people in our lives ... like we've never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect, and more often wear a smile ... Remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy's being read ... With your life's actions to rehash ... Would you be proud of the things they say ... About how you spent your dash?

Participants’ Reflections:

  • I have a friend who reminds me that everything looks so small when we view it from the perspective of a mountain top. Perspective is a gift.

  • I loved the reading. It’s a great reminder to live my best life and to be loving to everyone. I found myself crying.

  • I enjoyed the reading, it was a wow. That little proud dash. An amazing thought.

  • I thought of the Christmas song “Dashing Through the Snow.” What if the dash on a tombstone was another symbol, like an equal sign or a plus. Each day we look for rebirth, we watch things come and go. I like the idea of the perspective of 35,000 feet. As a kid, I used to climb trees and I would laugh at watching the people scurrying below, like ants. This was a rich reading.

  • I’m looking for a connection to my higher power. Timing is everything. My dash is more than having problems at my job. It’s about perspective: this is a moment, these are my feelings. This is life. It’s important that I connect. So much is relative.

  • Even if I sit in agitation for 15 minutes, I am devoting time to me.

  • This is quite an idea: six months don’t define me. How many times have I felt in the pits? Those moments don’t define me.

  • The coronavirus has put me in touch with my mortality. I had a dream about dying last night. During the meditation, I was propelled to get up and pick a soul reading card. I picked Hecate, the crone goddess of crossroads. She sees where she’s been, where she is going.

  • I can feel the truth of the crossroads.

  • Perspective. If we see our whole life in perspective, the coronavirus period will be a small part. Significant things may happen during it. What a different perspective from a mountain top. All will be well.

  • People have been saying they are taking a breather. A break gives us time to see in another perspective. The Universe seems to weave together life but it’s hard to see it unless we look back.

Photo credit: Keegan Houser

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