We dream of places and things that are unlike our own.
Most world religions, and certainly the top two of Christianity (31%) and Islam (24%)
share a core belief of a savior,
to save us from our current circumstances.
We want to escape, and we want someone outside of ourselves to come and make this happen.
Savior, or Mahdi: will rule the earth and triumph over injustice, over all evil.
Our oppressors. People who harm us with their desire for wealth and power?
The people believed this of Jesus, but were disappointed when he told them,
That is not why I've come.
Comparison, competition, and blame on the ground,
and strategies to gain power, control and wealth at the conference tables
have created this system of storms outside of us.
How is it that we create a real change? It takes bravery. Courage.
Of course, we keep the beliefs that serve us, that give us hope--
but the responsibility is ours to make things better when we can.
Do I make things better? By how I think, what I talk about?
Versus, looking outside and asking, Do they make things better?
The Tokyo Closing Ceremonies recently had a stunning display of light, surrounded by darkness.
Light, since the bulb, has become a fact, boring, taken for granted.
We flip the switch or ask the disembodied voice of our virtual assistant
to turn them on.
One of my favorite things is to see little lit lamps in windows from outside, especially if the light is warm and yellow. I associate it with a love-filled home.
Light and love are strongly linked.
The Olympic Ceremonies start with lighting a single torch. Through the Games, if the light goes out, a reserve of the original flame is kept and it is re-ignited.
Dousing the light at the end is a ritual of closure.
This morning, the moon waxed to it's fullness. Today it starts, ever-so-slowly, to wane.
The symbolism of the full moon is completion:
a cycle that has finished,
gotten as big as it will get and
starts toward a new moon again.
Because the Zenith of this moon was in the morning, both Saturday and Sunday night's view is full.
The largest lit moon displays on both nights for this cycle.
Last night's moon was part of the past cycle, as it had not technically reached full.
Tonight's full moon is actually part of the new cycle, as it has gotten the teensiest bit smaller.
I ritualed last night, for full closure of a life, a marriage, and my patterns.
I wrote a page of closing comments in advance. I denied the strong desire to edit.
There were three half-burnt candles in glass votives in the back of a drawer, brought from the big family house.
They still had wax to burn, and had been packed.
There were three loved ones living with me then, for 20 years I lived with three.
I remembered and could see one of the candle's wicks was short,
almost submerged level with the wax.
Many times, once wax melted, the light would go out. It never stayed lit long.
I was determined to keep it lit long enough.
I held it between two fingers, tipped to the side,
letting the melted wax accumulate on the side of the glass,
and read my page aloud.
The three lights lit my page. I read it a second time.
It felt like Closing Ceremonies. Like a Letting Go.
My heart lifted hearing the words I had created. Powerful.
Then the votive I was holding got too hot, and my fingers burned. I dropped it on the counter. Wax spilled a little.
I was still calm.
I gave a, "Youch," but then watched as the votive rested on it's side, after rolling away from the others and my page.
The two remaining lights still flickered and lit the space.
My family is a little smaller, but it is still there, which is comforting.
Today's Deep Breath: a practical juju nugget, a collective Next Best Decision.
I planned my little ceremony. I didn't plan what to write or even to write anything at all. I created it out of an intention to end the past and start the future.
React and Create share all the same letters.
A lot of what we do is react to other people, to things outside of ourselves.
It seems many systems are set up with an intention of, How can I fight with you?
How can I get what I want, knowing many others also want it?
How can I get more than you?
How can I make sure that what I have is Enough?
In the Olympics, and for the years of training from 2-5 years old, the goal which brings the most peace is to compete against your own times and abilities.
When the motivation of competing with another is to beat them,
be better than them,
it holds the athlete back from what is possible. It's limiting.
Who knows how far we could go if we create our own path, beating who we were last year,
continuing to become.
Creating our path doesn't need to be visible to others.
Sure, they might notice a change in you.
We can thrive in any physical surrounding, wearing any clothes, working any job.
If thrive is the action, a verb, then what do we need to feel to do it?
Must we feel curious? Capable? Confident? Amazing? Lifted? Saved?
Joy, until breath blows out the candle.