In my quest to learn more about Howard Thurman, I came across this quote: "Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive." That's good advice for us all. If we are on earth, then we still have time to do that which we were born to do. And, what we were born to do is to come alive in every fiber of our being. Even if it is only a few moments a day, do it and watch the magic happen.
I spent the week studying the works of Howard Thurman, minister, educator and influencer to MLK. As many have said, "Without a Howard Thurman, there is no Martin Luther King." While it will take some time to process what I've read, I've already fallen in love with this quote: "Do not be silent; there is no limit to the power that may be released through you." Do not be silent. Say something today which is authentically YOU. It could be kindness. It could be standing up for justice. It could be singing. It could be gratitude. Give voice to your truth and trust that the Divine will come through you in powerful and life-changing ways. And, that makes for an Ecstatic Friday! Let's live it. Amen
From our winter spot, even with all windows closed, we hear the sea breathing, heavily. In and out. A slow dance...not a cha-cha or salsa, but a gliding waltz. I think. Smooth. Powerful. Beckoning. Perhaps that is why on this Ecstatic Friday, I'm reminded of Nietzsche: "We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once." Here's to dance filling your day. Even if it is for a brief moment and by yourself. Dance, dance, dance.
Happy Ecstatic Friday. In yoga, the key to practice is intention -- that wonderful moment when you set your mind to do whatever-it-is-you-most-want-to-do. How closely you manifest the posture is not important. It matters most that the intention was brought forth into consciousness and held. So for 2016, forget resolutions. Let's state intentions instead. I've populated my intentions as a daily meeting on my outlook calendar because I want to be reminded that 2016 is all about setting an intention, holding it in consciousness and letting the magic happen. And, so it is!
Happy first Ecstatic Friday of 2016. When Kevin's 4-year-old granddaughter encounters new kids on a playground, she squares her shoulders and says in the most adorable way, "Hi. I'm Teal." Then proceeds to have a blast with her new friends. Doubts never cross her mind because she is focused on the adventure of the new and the excitement of the fun. So, to 2016, "Hi! I'm Paula. Let's play." Happy year ahead to all of you. Remember, you, too, are the special sauce for making this adventure fun.
The first day of 2015, I vowed, a la Michelangelo and his Angel, to carve and carve until my own masterpiece was released from the stone. So, a year later, here's what I know. Removing the material that doesn't belong in your life is hard. Relationships change radically and often painfully. Creating masterpieces take longer than a year. Wisdom doesn't come with a neon sign saying, "Here is it" but, rather, with a small whisper that says, "Keep going, you've got this." So long, 2015. You were an experience!
Happy Ecstatic Friday! I love the word "holy" and all that it brings into my mind -- sacred, consecrated, hallowed, divine. Perhaps that's why I actually like the term "holidays" at this time of year because I hear it as holy-days. For a few weeks, every where i look, the world proclaims: we are on holy ground, every breath is sacred, every moment divine. And that's the Truth! Holy, holy, holy!
Happy Ecstatic Friday! Today i am reminding myself of this Rumi quote: "The truth was a mirror in the hands of God. It fell, and broke into pieces. Everybody took a piece of it, and they looked at it and thought they had the truth." The Divine as we each see it, as our neighbors see it, as strangers see it, as our religion sees it ... all of it is just a piece of the whole. We humans won't know the full story until we leave Earth school. Until then, I seek to assemble as many pieces of the puzzle as I can because i know there is power in uniting, not dividing. And, that's my Truth.
Happy Ecstatic Friday. Sunday marks the first night of Hanukkah, the festival of lights. Given the darkness of the news cycle and the ever present hate, fear and belligerence surrounding us, we all need to be reminded that there is Light inside of us and Light surrounding us. As Meister Eckhart said, "Truly, it is in the darkness that one finds the light, so when we are in sorrow, then this light is nearest." So, when current events shake my faith in the Divineness of this world, I plan to sing Fannie Lou Hamer's favorite song, "This Little Light of Mine" until my heart remembers that my Light is more powerful than all the darkness out there. Join me and then we'll be twice as bright. Namaste.
Happy Ecstatic Friday from the midst of a whirling ice storm with a power outage. As I snuggle deep under the duvet, the world suddenly feels very alone. Isolated. It's this quote from Hermann Hesse that reminds me quietness is the key to wisdom: "We must become so alone, so utterly alone, that we withdraw into our innermost self. It is a way of bitter suffering. But then our solitude is overcome, we are no longer alone, for we find that our innermost self is the spirit, that it is God, the indivisible." Amen. Here's to finding a few moments today to be still long enough to know you are part of the immense whole of the Divine. And, so it is.
To all who are up in pre-dawn hours to cook for the upcoming feast, Salut! My Thanksgiving thought #4 comes from Meister Eckhart: "If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice." Amen. Happy Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving thought #3. Ralph Waldo Emerson: "I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and new." Exactly. Now, time to prepare for tomorrow's feast. Happy day.
Thanksgiving thought #2. When you look around the world to see good people suffering unjustly it is astonishing to consider how much misery, unhappiness and pain that i have been spared. And, for that, i am grateful.
Thanksgiving Week ushers in my annual contemplation on gratitude. For many reasons, this year has been a study in learning to accept and appreciate both the good things and the seemingly bad ones. This Ralph Waldo Emerson quote has never been far from my side: "Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.”
For this normally optimistic gal, this has been a hard week. The news, my facebook stream, and life's casual conversations have all been about one thing: fear. Fear of terrorists, refugees, Muslims, police officers, politicians, each other. You know what I think about that? We are stronger than this. Don't give in to the manipulation from a handful of people. If you are Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindi, Taoist or whatever, buck it up. Your faith should be your companion of comfort. If it is instilling fear in you, get a new faith. Kevin Kirkpatrick is fond of quoting his Grandmother Hoofnagle, "No person keeps their own life. That is up to God, himself." So, instead of allowing worry, anxiety and fear to creep up, listen to what I know to be true: you have a very little time on this earth. live it full. live it loud ... and most importantly live it with joy so that when it is your time to go, there are no regrets. And, that's my Ecstatic Friday. Namaste.
Many of my FB friends have shared videos of adopted dogs finding their forever homes. Watching these transformations from sorrow to pure jubilation reminded me of this Rumi quote: "You think of yourself as a citizen of the universe. You think you belong to this world of dust and matter. Out of this dust you have created a personal image, and have forgotten about the essence of your true origin." Want to know the true origins of you? You are divine. You are joy personified. You are love in motion. You have a forever home. Here's to living some portion of today knowing this to be truest of truths! Amen. Right on. Shalom. Salaam. Namaste. And, so it is.
I woke up this morning with "For Good" that delicious duet from Wicked ricocheting around my brain. The song celebrates how friends change each other in profound ways. I love this phrasing, "So much of me is made of what I learned from you. You'll be with me like a handprint on my heart." In an every day world where we catch up via social media, text and, very occasionally, a phone call, I think it is important to state that if you are reading this, you have made a difference in my life. And, for that I am very grateful. We wouldn't be friends in this forum if you were not important to me. So, throw off your bowlines and do something today to celebrate the incredible person that YOU are. You deserve it.
My father never hunted for antelope so it's a new meat for me to cook. Today, I'm trying antelope medallions in a Dijon cream sauce and roasted root vegetables.
First, for the roasted root vegetables. Thanks to Candice and Tedd Hennigh, owners of Aspen Ridge RV Park in South Fork, Colorado, we've got pounds and pounds of yummy Colorado potatoes. I'm pairing that with a Vidalia onion, carrots, fresh thyme, garlic, parsley and salt and pepper. Covered with aluminum foil in my trusty toaster oven at 400degrees for 45 minutes. Then, 30 minutes or so uncovered to get them crisp. (I personally like a crispy exterior with a soft interior.)
Second, the antelope. What I'm using: enough pronghorn backstrap for 2 people (about a pound), a dollop of whip cream from a canister, 1/2 of a dollop of Dijon mustard, bourbon, salt and pepper.
Ol' Dutch and I discussed whether to beat the backstrap or not. Since I am eager to learn how anteleope responds to different cooking methods, I'm opting not to beat it. Will see how this turns out.
I brought the antelope to room temperature, patted dry and sprinkled with coarse ground pepper and sea salt.
It is very rare that I awake on Friday without some inspiration to post. This morning, however, I had nothing. No insight. No quote. Nada. Zip. No amount of searching or prayer brought forth anything but silence.
Then, I turned to the silence and said, "What am I missing?" And, with loud, thundering clarity it came: gratitude.
And, close on its heels came this quote from Tecumseh, the Shawnee Chief: "When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the morning light. Give thanks for your life and strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. And if perchance you see no reason for giving thanks, rest assured the fault is in yourself.”
Well played, Universe, well played.
Thanks to Ol' Dutch's expert shooting, we have a freezer of antelope. Being from Texas, I have always thought the meat of an antelope is gamey, tough with a touch of sage in every bite.
While that may be true for other antelope, ours this years had apparently had a constant diet of alfalfa, barley and potato blossom which produced meat that could only be described as buttery, tender and delicious. With the exception of the color (which was a deep, dark red), the texture reminded me of veal.
And, you know what that means? Veal Parmigiana for everyone.Read More