Happy Thanksgiving!  It’s been a lovely weekend of practice – intentional and not quite so.  Frank and I lead an all day silent retreat on Saturday and, perhaps for the first time, I found myself wondering whether all this effort is making any difference.  I don’t mean a difference in the world; just a difference in the people who come, who sit, who share their reflections.  It’s that old need to have evidence that things will work and while that’s very appropriate when we’re dealing with some things in life, maybe that’s not the paradigm for an individual craving for reassurance.

It’s a matter of faith, I suppose.  Cultivate the land, sow the seeds, nourish the ground.  Then let go.  Taking a walk one day last week, I noticed this.  In the soft Autumn light, there was so much dying and regeneration happening.  The wild apple trees had released their leaves and the spurs which will carry next year’s fruit were cuddled against the branches.  The oak that self-seeded in the lane had let the ochre leaves fly and around its base were the beginnings of future oak trees.  The milkweed preened in the breeze sending out trails of gossamer strands as their green nubby pouches curled back in a pose of gift-giving.

It’s a beautiful realization until, of course, mind grabs it and makes it into something.  And in the sowing of that seed, practice begins anew.

I hope on this day, wherever you may be,  your life opens itself to all that is already there.  Ripe.  Full.  Ready.  Giving.

4 thoughts on “thanksgiving

  1. Beautiful photos! So clear and crisp…

    I know what that’s like to want feedback too. Someone once told me that all you can do is offer what you have (who you are) and it’s up to the receiver to actually receive it and ingest it and do what they need to do with it. Much like in conversation – we’re not responsible for how they hear it, etc.

    Wishing you the abundance and fullness of Life as well!

  2. Much to give thanks for, indeed!

    We plant seeds knowing that not all of them will germinate, grow into healthy plants, flower and give fruit. But even though seeds that fail to germinate provide food for little critters.

    Everyone is nourished by your effort. Thank you!

  3. Reminds me of Jesus’ parable about sowing seeds on different kinds of soil – some of the seeds die and some struggle to survive and some thrive. This was his message to his disciples when he sent them out into the world. You remind me again that the fruits of my efforts are not, on the deepest level, any of my business. All I can do is offer what I have in the spirit of faith that you mention.

  4. Thank you, my friends!

    David, welcome! Your words remind me too that making all of it my business just leads to over-investment and quite likely a spiritual bankruptcy!

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