Archive for May, 2014
Just prior to Memorial Day, The Old Guard (the 3rd U.S. Infantry), places more than 260,000 flags in front of gravestones in Arlington National Cemetery and 13,500 at the U.S. Soldier’s and Airmen’s Home National Cemetery. They place an additional 7,300 flags on niches at the cemetery’s columbarium. They have been doing this for 40 years.
The Old Guard soldiers remain in the cemetery throughout the weekend, ensuring that the flags remain in place. They also place flags at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and by the Tomb Sentinels. After Memorial Day all the flags are removed before each cemetery opens again to the public.
I invite you to take a moment today to remember; to honor, not just those who have fallen, but those who still serve and their families.
As in, I don’t wanna. There is a lot I don’t wanna do. There is a lot I wanna do. I struggle to find my way between the opposites.
At the moment, my mind and my body are on opposing teams. My mind keeps fielding ‘Shoulda’, ‘Gotta’, ‘Coulda’ and ‘Woulda’; formidable opponents. My body fields ‘Don’t Wanna’, who keeps chanting, ‘Get off the field.’
There is a Wanna in Germany and a Wana Pakistan. What catches my attention, is the Wanna Wanna Inn, Beach Bar & Grill on South Padre Island. I think I might contact them. They would be a perfect team sponsor.
I hear echos of The Spice Girls song, “Wanna Be” … “I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna.” I don’t gotta, but I very well might wanna. Choice words are empowering. A grounding meditation and some time spent in Nature will guide me through this passage. And I will find a balanced Wanna.
“I don’t go to church and rarely meditate in a formal way. I wear ordinary clothes and eat an ordinary diet. I have an aversion to much of the language I hear and read from today’s spiritual sources. I don’t aim to be whole, I don’t feel a need for special community, I don’t want to live in the present, and I would rather figure out how to be comfortable in life’s complexity and darkness than to find the light.”
So writes Thomas Moore, Psychotherapist and former Monk, in Spirituality & Health, May/June 2014. I resonated with much of what he said. Although, I have worked hard to be ‘present’; for me, the ‘trick’ to traveling my life path, is finding the way between the opposites. Walking as best I can between piety and impiety. I don’t want to be too spiritual. I don’t want to be too mundane.
Moore cites the wisdom of Sioux mystical teacher, Black Elk, that what we need is to see in a sacred manner. The handiwork of Divine Intelligence is all around us. We need only open our vision to it’s crystal clear presence.
I really identify with Moore when he says, “This isn’t simple piety. A sacred vision is something you win through deep initiations, painful endurance of illness and setbacks, and a willingness to take life on rather than avoid it.”
Some heady grist for the mind’s mill. Late Spring is a perfect time to open our eyes to the experience of sacred seeing.
Anna Jarvis trademarked the phrases ‘Mother’s Day’ and ‘Second Sunday in May’. And so in 1908, the honoring of individual Mothers with a special day began. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed Mother’s Day an official Holiday in 1914.
The ensuing commercialization of Mother’s Day was so upsetting to Jarvis that in 1948 she was arrested for disturbing the peace at a public demonstration protesting what she called ‘the Hallmark Holiday’. Although many believe that without adoption by retailers, especially florists, Mother’s Day might never have survived to become the event we currently enjoy.
Today Mother’s Day is celebrated in many countries throughout the world. Cards, flowers, dining out, family gatherings, and gifting abound. Church attendance ranks third, behind Christmas and Easter, and it is the biggest long-distance phone call day of the year.
Last week Earth Day celebrations honored Mother Earth; tempestuous and tender; forgiving and unforgiving; verdant and arid; sweet and harsh. Sunday, regardless of how you choose to celebrate, I invite you to honor your Mother.