Sunday, December 27, 2009

Meeting the Divine

"Your soul is beautiful.
In order for your soul to become completely free,
it must meet with divinity."
--Courtesy Dahn Yoga

Hope Message

"I brought you today the flower of Tao.

"I give this flower to you.
Although there is only one flower, this is enough.

"When the moon shines upon the earth,
it is reflected in millions of lakes across the planet.
That is enough, also.
The lakes in your hearts and minds
will all reflect the beauty of this flower.

"I want you to receive this flower
not with your hands, but with your hearts.
If you receive it with your hearts,
then this one flower is plenty for all of us."

--Courtesy Dahn Yoga

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Remembering Jacques Cousteau and John Denver

I'm remembering the words to the song "Calypso" that John Denver wrote in honor of Jacques-Yves Cousteau, and how important both of them were during my formative years.

To sail on a dream on a crystal clear ocean,
to ride on the crest of a wild raging storm;
To work in the service of life and living,
in search of the answers of questions unknown;
To be part of the movement and part of the growing,
part of beginning to understand--
Aye Calypso the places you've been to,
the things that you've shown us,
the stories you tell.
Aye Calypso, I sing to your spirit,
the men who have served you so long and so well.
Like the dolphin who guides you, you bring us beside you
To light up the darkness and show us the way.
For though we are strangers in your silent world,
To live on the land we must learn from the sea
To be true as the tide and free as a wind swell,
Joyful and loving in letting it be.
Aye Calypso the places you've been to,
the things that you've shown us,
the stories you tell.
Aye Calypso, I sing to your spirit,
the men who have served you so long and so well.

Thank you, John Denver and Jacques Cousteau: you both had such a profound influence on me. It's about time I did something with all that you taught me....

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Embracing Hope

In the words of Sanjayan, a scientist with The Nature Conservancy, "we in the conservation movement have done a spectacular job of demoralizing and depressing people." Unfortunately, our focus on the difficulty, the immediacy, and the extent of the challenges confronting the world's environments this century has convinced too many people that "the world is doomed."

Of course, it's not only because Earth is resilient, but also because collectively, we human beings have the intelligence and wherewithal to make fundamental changes and accomplish great things. If we decide to do so.

What we need is Hope, a belief that what we do as individuals and as a species can make a big difference. Hope that we can find common purpose in ensuring that our Earth remains not simply habitable but also beautifully diverse and life-giving.

Without hope, we wallow in resignation, admitting helplessness without ever really daring to see what we might be capable of accomplishing.

So it becomes important to publicize the good news, to make people aware of what we have done to preserve a species, to protect a natural place, to discover ways to reduce our "carbon footprint" or our impact on nature.
This is my Christmas wish: that we embrace our full human potential, put aside our helpless attitudes, and empower ourselves with Hope. And this is my Christmas gift: I commit myself to focusing on the positive, to doing whatever I can to keep Hope alive among us.

It may take some time, but if we go forward with Hope, we really will be able to accomplish the "miraculous."

Here's the link to Sanjayan's interview with David Letterman on this topic: