Leaf of the Tree

Finding the Divine in the Details


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The courage to relinquish certainties

Gleanings found here and there:

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Painting, “Movement”, Diane Kirkup

Relinquish what is without. Cultivate what is within. Live for your centre, not your senses.

~ Tao te Ching, Lao Tzu

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Painting, “Movement”, Diane Kirkup / https://www.etsy.com/shop/DKirkupDesigns

 

Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties.

~ Erich Fromm

There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year’s course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word ‘happy’ would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.”   ~ Carl Jung


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The whole sky to fly in

Spring flowers remind us to be happy. It’s as though God treasured this invitation in each one,

then spread them abundantly about the landscape to ensure we wouldn’t miss it.

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Photo: Saffron Moser

Spring and flowers and happiness all dwell together in a snapshot scene from a long-ago Equinox.

As I packed up our Toyota for the Naw-Rúz (New Year, for Baha’is) party that night, I opened the car door to find our small son sitting in the backseat so surrounded by a mass of daffodils that I could barely see him. To ensure that the flowers traveled safely, my husband gave him the task of holding them and it was the first time he’d seen these harbingers of spring.

It’s hard to remember which was bigger, or brighter — that explosion of golden blooms, or his huge grin as he clutched his precious cargo. That smile was about the only part of him I could see.

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Photo: Saffron Moser

This scene had prophecy in it. Today, our son grows hundreds of thousands of plants and sends them out into the wide world.

As I remember that day on this spring morning nearly 30 years later, with the sounds of wild geese flying over the house, I feel a soft sadness brush against me, rather the way a dog or cat might.

Such feelings seem the inevitable outcome of simply living through the decades, a necessary component of the blessing of life, the contrast between happy memories and wistful ones, wintry days and brilliant spring sunshine, dark and light.

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Photo: Kathy Gilman

When we pause to reflect, it’s so often the contrast we come to see and recall. As one character in my recent work says, when confronted with the passage — and wages — of  time:

Didn’t it all turn out differently than we expected?

Didn’t it once seem there would be the whole sky to fly in?”

It did, no doubt for all of us. It’s not what we thought, or perhaps planned or expected.

And yet, like the flowers and other plants that bloom and reappear so faithfully around us each year, there is fresh beauty and possibility in each new day. Even in the cells of the moments that make them up.

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Photo: Saffron Moser

No, it’s never what we thought, because it’s so very much bigger. When we look. And see. It really is the whole sky, and it will come to meet us when we stop hurling ourselves against it.

In their essence, daffodils, like so many spring flowers, remind us to be happy. It’s as though God treasured this special invitation in each one and then spread them abundantly about the landscape to make sure we wouldn’t miss it.

May each new springtime remind us we are truly unlimited  beings, however earthly our journey often seems.


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Life has not forgotten us

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Photo: D. Kirkup Designs

Gleanings found here and there:

 … remember that life has not forgotten you; it holds you in its hand and will not let you fall. Why would you want to exclude from your life any uneasiness, any pain, any depression, since you don’t know what work they are accomplishing within you? ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

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Image: D. Kirkup Designs

Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother. 

~ Kahlil Gibran

Oh, these vast, calm measureless mountain days, inciting at once to work and rest! Days in whose light everything seems equally divine, opening a thousand windows to show us God.

 ~ John Muir

Suffering is the Mind’s response to sadness or pain. If you suffer while experiencing sadness or pain, you have clearly made a decision that you should not now be experiencing it. It is this decision, not the sadness or pain itself, that is the cause of your suffering. …

Suffering is your announcement that you may not fully understand why it is arising, and how it all fits into the Agenda of the Soul. When you fully comprehend exactly what is taking place in your life, as well as the Process of Life Itself, then your suffering ends, even if the pain continues. Nothing changes, but everything is different.  ~ Neale Donald Walsch

Find more work from artist Diane Kirkup at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/DKirkupDesigns