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Grateful for our Guests

For those who have been keeping up with my Parenting Workshops at Drug Court, here is Session 3 of 4.

On a personal note, two major points of interest occurred this week in preparation for this class.  1.  My mentor suggested that the purpose of my teaching this class is for me. (Why yes, of course).  AND, my reason is to better understand the human condition.  (Yes, Oneness with All; Universality).  2.  I made one giant leap on my “mystery” book.  It’s a mystery because I don’t know what it’s about.  AND, at coffee this week with my support hive, I discovered a clue:  it may not be all about me.

Are we not each a microcosm in the macrocosm?  Are we not each learning to dance with our shadow?  Is not our universal human condition to be gardeners of life – composting pain into peace? 


We watched the movie, Shadow Effect.

Exercise:  On a recipe card, write out the following ingredients:

1.  The birth of your shadow:  comments internalized from mother, father, teacher, preacher.

2.  Public life versus private life:  name your incongruencies.

3.  List your favorite “projections” to give others.

4.  What do you resist that continues to persist?

Take these traits and attributes, kneed them and turn them inside out.

This is your Divine Recipe – the recipe for your best life.  This is about turning pain into peace, offering compassion and extending forgiveness, so you can shine your light into the world.

This is authentic, fear-less living.  Being the best parent we can be is about loving ourselves, embracing our shadows, and living authentically.  Living our best life gives our children permission to do the same.

I was sharing an anecdotal story with a friend about breaking a “family rule.”  She said, “You know you are giving your children permission to not live your life.”  I smiled.  “Exactly,” I said.

The following poem is shared in the movie.  I find it especially powerful this time of year.  With a heart of thanksgiving and many social gatherings forthcoming, the image for me is both metaphorical and physical.  Each guest  – sadness or happiness, Jack or Jill – bears a message from beyond.  Each are placed in my life for a reason.  It is now my choice to make something of it all, and to create something extraordinary from the ordinary.

The Guest House

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 furniture,

still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing 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 whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

— Jelaluddin Rumi,
translation by Coleman Barks


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Turning Forgiveness Inside Out

Stop Creating Unwanted Moments

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