Stories - Poems - Prayers
The Scratch on a Diamond
The story is told of a king who owned a valuable diamond, one of the rarest and most perfect in the world. One day the diamond fell and a deep scratch marred its face. The king summoned the best diamond experts in the land to correct the blemish. They each agreed that they could not remove the scratch without cutting away a good part of the surface, thus reducing the weight and value of the diamond.
Finally, one expert appeared an assured him that he could fix the diamond without reducing its value. His confidence was convincing and the king gave the diamond to the man. In a few days, the artisan returned the diamond to the king, who was amazed to find that the ugly scratch was gone and its its place a beautiful rose was etched. The former scratch had become the stem of an exquisite flower!
The sun may be clouded, yet ever the sun
Will sweep on its course, 'til the cycle is run;
And when into chaos the system is hurled
Again shall the builder reshape a new world.
Your path may be clouded, uncertain your goal,
Move on - for your orbit is fixed to your soul.
And though it may lead into darkness of night,
The torch of the builder shall give it new light.
You were! You will be! Know what you are!
Your spirit has travelled both long and afar.
It came from the source - to the source it returns,
The spark that was lighted eternally burns.
It slept in a jewel; it leapt in a wave,
It roamed in a forest; it rose from the grave,
It took on strange garb for long eons of years
And now in the soul of yourself it appears.
From body to body your spirit speeds on
It seeks a new form when the old one is gone.
In the form that it finds is the fabric you wrought
On the loom of the mind, from the fibre of thought.
As dew is drawn upwards, in rain to descend
Your thoughts drift away, and in destiny blend.
You cannot escape them, for petty or great,
Or evil, or noble, they fashion your fate.
Somewhere, on some planet, sometime and somehow
Your life will reflect your thoughts of you now.
My Law is unerring; no blood can atone,
In the structure you built you will live in alone
From cycle to cycle, through time and through space,
Your life with your longings will ever keep pace.
And all that you ask for, and all you desire
Must come at your bidding, as flame out of fire.
One listen to that voice, an all tumult is done;
Your life is the life of the Infinite One.
And in the hurrying race we are conscious of pause
With love for the purpose and love for the cause;
You are your own devil - you are your own God,
You fashioned the paths that your footsteps have trod,
And none can save you from error or sin
Until you have hearkened to the spirit within.
By Tieme Ranapiri
Prayer of St. Francis
Lord make me an instrument of thy peace
Where there is hatred let me sow love
Where there is injury let me sow pardon
Where there is doubt let me sow faith
Where there is despair let me sow faith
Where there is darkness let me sow hope
Where there is sadness let me sow joy.
Oh Divine One grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console
Be understood as to understand
Be loved as to love
For it is in giving that we receive
It is in forgiving that we are forgiven
It is in fully living that we honour thy majesty.
You, who are the source of all power,
Whose rays illuminate the whole world,
Illuminate also my heart
So that it can do your work.
May you be in peace.
May your heart remain open.
May you be healed from all separation.
May you be a source of healing for all beings.
May you awaken to the light of your true nature.
May you never feel separate from the source of loving kindness.
May you be happy.
Let us be still an instant
Let us be still an instant, and forget
all things we ever learned, all thoughts we had,
and every preconception that we hold
of what things mean and what their purpose is.
Let us remember not our own ideas
of what the world is for.
We do not know....
Simply do this:
Be still and lay aside all thoughts
of what you are and what God is;
all concepts you have learned about the world;
all images you hold about yourself...
Do not bring with you one thought the past has taught,
nor one belief you ever learned before from anything.
Forget this world, forget this course,
and come with wholly empty hands unto your God.
Anonymous (Christian text)
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
By Mary Oliver
A Beautiful Story
One day, as usual, an orphan, a little girl stood at the street corner begging for food, money or whatever she could get. Now, this girl was wearing very tattered clothes, was dirty and quite dishevelled.
A well-to-do young man passed that corner without giving the girl a second look. But, when he returned to his expensive home, his happy and comfortable family, and his well-laden dinner table, his thoughts returned to the young orphan. He became very angry with God for allowing such conditions to exist.
He reproached God saying, “How can you let this happen! Why don’t you do something to help this girl?”
Then he heard God in the depths of his being responding by saying “I did. I created you.”
Installation of Love
Installation of Love…..(from Gods help desk)
The instructive course by Tech. Support to a Customer:-
Tech. Support: Yes… How can I help you?
Customer: Well, after much consideration I decided to install Love.
Can you guide me through the process?
Tech. Support: Yes. I can help you. Are you ready to proceed?
Customer: Well’ I’m not very technical, but I think I’m ready. What do I do first?
Tech. Support: The first step is to open your Heart. Have you located your Heart?
Customer: Yes, but there are several other programs running now. Is it okay to install Love while they are running?
Tech. Support: What programs are running?
Customer: Lets see, I have past hurts, low self-esteem, grudge and resentment running right now.
Tech. Support: No problem, Love will gradually erase past hurts from your currant operating system. It may remain in your permanent memory but it will no longer disrupt other programs. Love will eventually over-ride low self-esteem with a module of its own called high self-esteem. However, you have to completely turn off grudge and resentment. Those programs prevent Love from being properly installed. Can you turn those off?
Customer: I don’t know how to turn them off. Can you tell me how?
Tech. Support: with pleasure. Go to your start menu and invoke forgiveness. Do this as many times as necessary until grudge and resentment have been completely erased.
Customer: Okay, done! Love has started installing itself. Is that normal?
Tech. Support: Yes, but remember that you only have the base program. You need to begin connecting to other Hearts in order to get the upgrades.
Customer: Oops! I have an error message already. It says, “error – program not run on external components.” What shall I do?
Tech. Support: Don’t worry. It means that the Love program is set up to run on internal Hearts, but has not yet been run on your Heart. In non-technical terms, it simply means that you have to Love yourself before you can Love others.
Customer: So, what should I do?
Tech. Support: Pull down self-acceptance, then click on the following files: “Forgive-Self”; “Realize Your Worth”; and “Acknowledge Your Limitations”.
Customer: Okay, done.
Tech. Support: Now, copy them to the “My Heart” directory. The system will overwrite any conflicting files and begin patching faulty programming. Also, you need to delete Verbose Self-Criticism from all directories and empty your recycle bin to make sure it is completely gone and never comes back.
Customer: Got it. Hey “My Heart is filling up with new files. Smile is playing on my monitor and peace and contentment are copying themselves all over my Heart. Is this normal?
Tech, Support: Sometimes. For others it takes a while, but eventually everything gets it at the proper time. So Love is installed and running. One more thing before we hang up. Love is Freeware. Be sure to give it and its various modules to everyone you meet. They will in turn share it with others and return some cool modules back to you.
Customer: Thank you God.
Tech. Support: Gods Love is not based on emails!!
The Daffodil Principle
by Jaroldeen Asplund Edwards
Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, "Mother, you must come and see the daffodils before they are over." I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead. Going and coming took most of a day--and I honestly did not have a free day until the following week.
"I will come next Tuesday, " I promised, a little reluctantly, on her third call.
Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and so I drove the length of Route 91, continued on I-215, and finally turned onto Route 18 and began to drive up the mountain highway. The tops of the mountains were sheathed in clouds, and I had gone only a few miles when the road was completely covered with a wet, gray blanket of fog. I slowed to a crawl, my heart pounding. The road becomes narrow and winding toward the top of the mountain. As I executed the hazardous turns at a snail's pace, I was praying to reach the turnoff at Blue Jay that would signify I had arrived. When I finally walked into Carolyn's house and hugged and greeted my grandchildren I said, "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in the clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these darling children that I want to see bad enough to drive another inch!"
My daughter smiled calmly," We drive in this all the time, Mother."
"Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears--and then I'm heading for home!" I assured her.
"I was hoping you'd take me over to the garage to pick up my car. The mechanic just called, and they've finished repairing the engine," she answered.
"How far will we have to drive?" I asked cautiously.
"Just a few blocks," Carolyn said cheerfully.
So we buckled up the children and went out to my car. "I'll drive," Carolyn offered. "I'm used to this." We got into the car, and she began driving.
In a few minutes I was aware that we were back on the Rim-of-the-World Road heading over the top of the mountain. "Where are we going?" I exclaimed, distressed to be back on the mountain road in the fog. "This isn't the way to the garage!"
"We're going to my garage the long way," Carolyn smiled, "by way of the daffodils."
"Carolyn," I said sternly, trying to sound as if I was still the mother and in charge of the situation, "please turn around. There is nothing in the world that I want to see enough to drive on this road in this weather."
"It's all right, Mother," She replied with a knowing grin. "I know what I'm doing. I promise, you will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience."
And so my sweet, darling daughter who had never given me a minute of difficulty in her whole life was suddenly in charge -- and she was kidnapping me! I couldn't believe it. Like it or not, I was on the way to see some ridiculous daffodils -- driving through the thick, gray silence of the mist-wrapped mountaintop at what I thought was risk to life and limb.
I muttered all the way. After about twenty minutes we turned onto a small gravel road that branched down into an oak-filled hollow on the side of the mountain. The Fog had lifted a little, but the sky was lowering, gray and heavy with clouds.
We parked in a small parking lot adjoining a little stone church. From our vantage point at the top of the mountain we could see beyond us, in the mist, the crests of the San Bernardino range like the dark, humped backs of a herd of elephants. Far below us the fog-shrouded valleys, hills, and flatlands stretched away to the desert.
On the far side of the church I saw a pine-needle-covered path, with towering evergreens and manzanita bushes and an inconspicuous, lettered sign "Daffodil Garden."
We each took a child's hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path as it wound through the trees. The mountain sloped away from the side of the path in irregular dips, folds, and valleys, like a deeply creased skirt.
Live oaks, mountain laurel, shrubs, and bushes clustered in the folds, and in the gray, drizzling air, the green foliage looked dark and monochromatic. I shivered. Then we turned a corner of the path, and I looked up and gasped. Before me lay the most glorious sight, unexpectedly and completely splendid. It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it down over the mountain peak and slopes where it had run into every crevice and over every rise. Even in the mist-filled air, the mountainside was radiant, clothed in massive drifts and waterfalls of daffodils. The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns, great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, saffron, and butter yellow.
Each differet-colored variety (I learned later that there were more than thirty-five varieties of daffodils in the vast display) was planted as a group so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue.
In the center of this incredible and dazzling display of gold, a great cascade of purple grape hyacinth flowed down like a waterfall of blossoms framed in its own rock-lined basin, weaving through the brilliant daffodils.
A charming path wound throughout the garden. There were several resting stations, paved with stone and furnished with Victorian wooden benches and great tubs of coral and carmine tulips. As though this were not magnificence enough, Mother Nature had to add her own grace note -- above the daffodils, a bevy of western bluebirds flitted and darted, flashing their brilliance. These charming little birds are the color of sapphires with breasts of magenta red. As they dance in the air, their colors are truly like jewels above the blowing, glowing daffodils. The effect was spectacular.
It did not matter that the sun was not shining. The brilliance of the daffodils was like the glow of the brightest sunlit day. Words, wonderful as they are, simply cannot describe the incredible beauty of that flower-bedecked mountain top.
Five acres of flowers! (This too I discovered later when some of my questions were answered.) "But who has done this?" I asked Carolyn. I was overflowing with gratitude that she brought me -- even against my will. This was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
"Who?" I asked again, almost speechless with wonder, "And how, and why, and when?"
"It's just one woman," Carolyn answered. "She lives on the property. That's her home." Carolyn pointed to a well-kept A-frame house that looked small and modest in the midst of all that glory.
We walked up to the house, my mind buzzing with questions. On the patio we saw a poster. " Answers to the Questions I Know You Are Asking" was the headline. The first answer was a simple one. "50,000 bulbs," it read. The second answer was, "One at a time, by one woman, two hands, two feet, and very little brain." The third answer was, "Began in 1958."
There it was. The Daffodil Principle.
For me that moment was a life-changing experience. I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than thirty-five years before, had begun -- one bulb at a time -- to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountain top. One bulb at a time.
There was no other way to do it. One bulb at a time. No shortcuts -- simply loving the slow process of planting. Loving the work as it unfolded.
Loving an achievement that grew so slowly and that bloomed for only three weeks of each year. Still, just planting one bulb at a time, year after year, had changed the world.
This unknown woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. She had created something of ineffable magnificence, beauty, and inspiration.
The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principle of celebration: learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time -- often just one baby-step at a time -- learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time.
When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world.
"Carolyn," I said that morning on the top of the mountain as we left the haven of daffodils, our minds and hearts still bathed and bemused by the splendors we had seen, "it's as though that remarkable woman has needle-pointed the earth! Decorated it. Just think of it, she planted every single bulb for more than thirty years. One bulb at a time! And that's the only way this garden could be created. Every individual bulb had to be planted. There was no way of short-circuiting that process. Five acres of blooms. That magnificent cascade of hyacinth!
All, all, just one bulb at a time."
The thought of it filled my mind. I was suddenly overwhelmed with the implications of what I had seen. "It makes me sad in a way," I admitted to Carolyn. "What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at a time' through all those years. Just think what I might have been able to achieve!"
My wise daughter put the car into gear and summed up the message of the day in her direct way. "Start tomorrow," she said with the same knowing smile she had worn for most of the morning. Oh, profound wisdom!
It is pointless to think of the lost hours of yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson a celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask, "How can I put this to use tomorrow?"
The Price of Children
This is just too good not to pass on to all. Something absolutely positive for
a change. I have repeatedly seen the breakdown of the cost of raising a child,
but this is the first time I have seen the rewards listed this way. It's nice.
The government recently calculated the cost of raising a child from birth to
18 and came up with $160,140 for a middle income family. Talk about sticker
shock! That doesn't even touch college tuition.
But $160,140 isn't so bad if you break it down. It translates into:
* $8,896.66 a year,
* $741.38 a month, or
* $171.08 a week.
* That's a mere $24.24 a day!
* Just over a dollar an hour.
Still, you might think the best financial advice is don't have children if you
want to be "rich."
Actually, it is just the opposite. What do you get for your $160,140?
* Naming rights. First, middle, and last!
* Glimpses of God every day.
* Giggles under the covers every night.
* More love than your heart can hold.
* Butterfly kisses and Velcro hugs.
* Endless wonder over rocks, ants, clouds, and warm cookies.
* A hand to hold, usually covered with jelly or chocolate.
* A partner for blowing bubbles, flying kites
* Someone to laugh yourself silly with, no matter what the boss said or how
your stocks performed that day.
For $160,140, you never have to grow up. You get to:
* carve pumpkins,
* play hide-and-seek,
* catch lightning bugs, and
* never stop believing in Santa Claus.
You have an excuse to:
* keep reading the Adventures of Piglet and Pooh,
* watching Saturday morning cartoons,
* going to Disney movies, and
* wishing on stars.
* You get to frame rainbows, hearts, and flowers under refrigerator magnets
and collect spray painted noodle wreaths for Christmas, hand prints set in
clay for Mother's Day, and cards with backward letters for Father's Day.
For $160,140, there is no greater bang for your buck. You get to be a hero
* retrieving a Frisbee off the garage roof,
* taking the training wheels off a bike,
* removing a splinter,
* filling a wading pool,
* coaxing a wad of gum out of bangs, and coaching a baseball team that never
wins but always gets treated to ice cream or pizza regardless.
You get a front row seat to history, to witness the:
* first step,
* first word,
* first bra,
* first date, and
* first time behind the wheel.
You get to be immortal. You get another branch added to your family tree, and
if you're lucky, a long list of limbs in your obituary called grandchildren
and great grandchildren. You get an education in psychology, nursing, criminal
justice, communications, and human sexuality that no college can match.
In the eyes of a child, you rank right up there under God. You have all the
power to heal a boo-boo, scare away the monsters under the bed, patch a broken heart, police a slumber party, ground them forever, and love them without limits. So, one day they will, like you, love without counting the cost. That is quite a deal for the price!!!!!!!
Love & enjoy your children & grandchildren!!!!!!!
An American decided to write a book about famous churches around the world. So he bought a plane ticket and took a trip to Orlando, thinking that he would start by working his way across the USA from South to North.
On his first day he was inside a church taking photographs when he noticed a golden telephone mounted on the wall with a sign that read "$10,000 per call". The American, being intrigued, asked a priest who was strolling by what the telephone was used for. The priest replied that it was a direct line to heaven and that for $10,000 you could talk to God. The American thanked the priest and went along his way.
Next stop was in Atlanta. There, at a very large cathedral, he saw the same golden telephone with the same sign under it. He wondered why this was the same kind of telephone he saw in Orlando and he asked a near by nun what its purpose was. She told him that it was a direct line to heaven and that for $10,000 he could talk to God. "O.K., thank you," said the American. He then travelled to Indianapolis, Washington DC,
Philadelphia, Boston and New York. In every church he saw the same golden telephone with the same "$10,000 per call" sign under it.
The American, upon leaving Vermont decided to travel to Canada to see if they had the same phone. He arrived in Canada, and again, in the first church he entered, there was the same golden telephone, but this time the sign under it read "40 cents per call." The American was surprised so he asked the priest about the sign. "Father, I've travelled all over America and I've seen this same golden telephone in many churches. I'm told that it is a direct line to heaven but in the US the price is $10,000 per call. Why is it so cheap here?"
The priest smiled and answered,
"You're in Canada now, son - It's a local call".
A Dog's Purpose? (from a 6-year-old).
Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.
I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.
As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him.
Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.
The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion.
We sat together for a while after Belker's Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.
Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ''I know why.''
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth
next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation.
It has changed the way I try and live.
He said,''People are born so that they can learn how to live
a good life -- like loving everybody all the time and being
''Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have
to stay as long.''
Remember, if a dog was the teacher you would learn
When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.
Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be
Stretch before rising.
Run, romp, and play daily.
Thrive on attention and let people touch you.
Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.
On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree
When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.
Never pretend to be something you're not.
If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.
When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and
nuzzle them gently.
ENJOY EVERY MOMENT OF EVERY DAY!
The Guest House by Rumi
This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival
A joy, a depression , a meanness
Some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows
Who violently sweep your house empty of its comforts.
Still, treat each guest honourably
He may be cleaning you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice
Meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes
Because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.
OUR DEEPEST FEAR
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously
give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.
- Marianne Williamson.
Why We Shout
A Hindu saint who was visiting river Ganges to take bath found a group of family members on the banks, shouting in anger at each other. He turned to his disciples smiled and asked. 'Why do people in anger shout at each other?'
Disciples thought for a while, one of them said, 'Because we lose our calm, we
shout.' 'But, why should you shout when the other person is just next to you? You can as well tell him what you have to say in a soft manner' asked the
saint. Disciples gave some other answers but none satisfied the other disciples.
Finally the saint explained, 'When two people are angry at each other, their hearts distance a lot. To cover that distance they must shout to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the stronger they will have to shout to hear each other to cover that great distance. What happens when two people fall in love? They don't shout at each other but talk softly, Because their hearts are very close. The distance between them is either nonexistent or very small...'
The saint continued, 'When they love each other even more, what happens? They do not speak, only whisper and they get even closer to each other in their love. Finally they even need not whisper, they only look at each other and that's all. That is how close two people are when they love each other.'
He looked at his disciples and said.
'So when you argue do not let your hearts get distant. Do not say
words that distance each other more, Or else there will come a day when the
distance is so great that you will not find the path to return.'
Oneness Eastern Canada!
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