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Finding Strength in Fragility

Finding Strength

in Fragility

Dear Friend

Beaming Out Love in Fragile Times
Beaming out a huge amount of virtual hugs and good singing vibes to you all
- hope you and your loved ones are keeping safe and well.
Thank you for staying tuned, whether on email, social media or Zoom - I really appreciate it.  We are singing each other through this, one day at a time.
Here's some thoughts on how honouring our fragility makes us stronger and helps us stay tuned to what really matters.

Honouring Our Fragility
Treating myself like a precious object will make me strong - Julia Cameron

This statement by Julia Cameron hit me between the eyes when I first read it many moons ago in The Artists Way.  It reveals this incredible paradox, that rather than armouring, denying, resisting, masking or muscling up to our vulnerability, we actually grow stronger when we honour it.   When I am willing to face my vulnerabilities, I am more able to connect with inner and outer sources of strength and support - when I acknowledge that I don't understand something, I become more open to learning; when I am willing to discuss issues, challenges and problems, I become more available to finding solutions.  Honouring our vulnerability does not mean getting lost in navel gazing - it can actually propel us into active service and empathic connection with others.  Acknowledging our shared fragility at this time inspires us to be more caring towards each other - to appreciate and thank our frontline workers and to find new ways of connecting from a distance.

Honouring the Unknown
I wish I could write as mysterious as a cat - unknown
One of the hardest thing for our minds to cope with is the unknown.  In the face of it our minds start inventing and speculating - as we seen in the cacophony of Corona Theories- conspiracy theories, medical and alternative health advice, fake and real news, new age portals, stats, graphs, pass on this virtual hug or die chain mails etc.  This is completely understandable, and as it will take time for solutions to emerge, we also need to find ways to allow ourselves to be with the unknown.  It can be deeply relieving for our mental health to let go of all the mind babble and just honestly say
I don't know, I am taking one day at a time.
All the great artists and mystics have taught us that the unknown is the space of creativity, that we find freedom through mystery, in the spaces beyond dogma, analysis, theory and conditioned beliefs.  The spark of inspiration is kindled in the space of unknowing, and there is no knowing what will catch light -  whether you are cooking dinner, writing a poem, putting a video out on social media, asking someone on a zoom date, it is always a grand experiment with unknown results. The risk and reward of this adventure is that we learn and grow, becoming bigger, wider, deeper, stronger, bolder, through each encounter with the unknown.

Honouring Death
There is no cure for birth and death save to enjoy the interval
- George Santayana

Death is the final great unknown, yet it is certain that we will face it - not just our own death, but in many endings, losses and bereavements throughout life.  As anyone who has tended a garden knows, nature continually moves through cycles of life, death and rebirth and even the most cursory glance at history demonstrates that human civilisations also rise, fall and renew.  Yet western capitalist media makes death taboo and peddles innumerable anti-aging products in an attempt to sell the illusion of eternal youth.  This vain denial of death leaves us unprepared - apparently 54% of people in the UK have not made a will.  Given that we pack an emergency bag ready before the birth of child, it is strange that so many people do not have their bags are packed ready for their final voyage.  Grief is exacerbated when there are regrets, conflicts, unfinished business and things left unsaid, so it is more caring, both to ourselves and those we leave behind, to make our final wishes clear.  As this crisis heightens our awareness of mortality, Death Cafes are seeing a huge surge in people needing to talk about death, part of a healthy movement towards being more honest and open about this natural part of existence.  It need not be gloomy - I have had very funny, tender conversations with my family about what to do should CV take me off the planet.
We can also learn from cultures and spiritual traditions where cultivating an active awareness of death enables us to live more fully in the present moment.  Remembering we only have a limited time on earth can inspire us to value our time and those we love, make amends, get our affairs in order and create a loving legacy for those who come after us.

Honouring the Precious Present Helps Build a Better Future
'We've had 5 weeks of not one single use coffee cup going out into Aoterea, that's around 2,800,000 - in NZ alone. What do we want to do now? Do we want to come out differently? Or do we return to using 80,000 bits of avoidable waste every day?'
Honouring our fragility enables us to get clearer about what really matters.  As societies, we are being forced to reflect, to take a collective pause on how we want to live - both now and in the future.   As we realise that decreased pollution and consumption  helps planet and people breathe more freely, countries emerging from lockdown are implementing economic and environmental reforms such as increasing cycle lanes and pedestrianised areas.  Honouring the precious fragility of life enables us to make the radical changes necessary to preserve life for today and for future generations.
As we take one fragile day at a time, we become stronger, resilient, more able to support one another, more available to the preciousness of each moment.  We can surrender to being captivated by a flower, a scent, a loved one's smile. Our moments become enriched with the gifts of presence.

Wishing you and yours many beautiful, precious moments of joy, love, creativity and connection in these fragile times.

Be well, be safe, breathe deep, sing loudly
- huge amounts of love and good singing vibes.

Something for a rainy day... 'on and on the rain will say, how fragile we are,' - Sting - dedicated to the fragility in all of us and those facing this crisis where there is no clean water, where there is war, poverty, violence, displacement and homelessness. We grow stronger, clearer, kinder & more in tune with what really matters when we honour the fragile preciousness of life 💦💧