A Day For Contemplation


Love in the World

Love in the World

Roaming in Thought

“Roaming in thought over the Universe, I saw the little that is Good steadily hastening towards immorality, And the vast all that is call’d Evil I saw hastening to merge itself and become lost and dead.”                                                                                                          –Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass

The Snow Light

In the snow light,
In the swan light,
In the white-on-white light
of a winter storm,
my delight and your delight
Kept each other warm.

The next afternoon
and love gone so soon!-
I met myself alone
In a windless calm,
Silenced at the bone
After the white storm.

What more was to come?
Out from the cocoon,
in the silent room,
pouring our white light,
amaryllis bloom
opened in the night.

The cool petals shone
like some winter moon
or shadow of a swan,
echoing the light
after you were gone
Of our white-on-white.”
—May Sarton

One Life

“A woman walking in a walker on the cliffs
recalls great bodily joys, much pain.
Nothing in her is apt to say
my heart aches, though she read those words
in a battered college text, this morning
as the sun rose. It is all too
mixed, the heart too mixed with laughter
raucousing the grief, her life
too mixed, she shakes her heavy
silvered hair at all the fixed
declarations of baggage. I should be dead and I’m alive
don’t ask me how; I don’t eat like I should
and still I like how the drop of vodka
hits the tongue. I was a worker and a mother,
that means a worker and a worker
but for one you don’t pay union dues
or get a pension; for the other
the men ran the union, we ran the home.
It was terrible and good, we had more than half a life,
I had four lives at least, one out of marriage
when I kicked up all the dust I could
before I know what I was doing.
One life with the girls on the line during the war,
yes, painting our legs and jitterbugging together
one life with a husband, not the worst,
one with your children, none of it just what you’d thought.
We took what we could.
But even this is a life, I’m reading a lot of books
I never read, my daughter brought home from school,
plays where you can almost hear them talking,
Romantic poets, Isaac Babel. A lot of lives
worse and better than what I knew. I’m walking again.
My heart doesn’t ache; sometimes though it rages.”                       —–Adrienne Rich

Gayan

“if you will go forward to find Us, We will come forward to receive you.
Give Us all you have, and We shall give you all We possess.
In man We have designed Our image; in woman We have finished it.
In man We have shown Our nature benign; in woman We have expressed Our art divine.
Make God a reality, and God will make you the truth.
Give all you have, and take all that is given to you.”                                      —excerpted from The Complete Sayings; Hazrat Inayat Khan

The receipe is to add positive energy to the negativity you find.

The recipe is to add positive energy to the negativity you find.

I am love

I am love

Be free, be lovePhoto by Barbara Mattio

Be free, be love
Photo by Barbara Mattio

I have had the Peaceful Time of my Life


"Bahama

Hello everyone. I am home and feeling so relaxed and happy. It was a wonderful trip. The light, sounds, smells, and textures of the trip are filling my heart and mind. I met many wonderful people and laughed a lot.

I think if you breathe in love and exhale peace, you see the world as it “really” is. I am so grateful that I won this trip and every day was an adventure. Music, hot tubs, beaches, waters colored by the hand of heaven. My sister and I were walking down a hallway on our way to breakfast. I suddenly thought, wow, I hardly have any clothes on and it is January. It kind of became a motto,”We are doing —–and it is January.

I believe I could have stayed forever except for a few excursions to New Orleans. My favorite city is New Orleans, actually French Quarter.

Peace was woven into our lives during this trip. I heard nothing but reggae music and laughter. People went out of their way to be kind and thoughtful. I heard not one voice raised in anger or hatred. People never were inconsiderate. Neither staff or passengers.

As a person on this planet, I realized that we are capable of kindness, discussion, manners, laughter, thoughtfulness. We are able to live on the One World with love and peace.We can look out for others, care about their troubles and give smiles and laughs rather than hatred and violence.

Walking on deck in the evening .Photo by Barbara Mattio

Walking on deck in the evening .Photo by Barbara Mattio

"Our

"Tropical

"Reggae

Abstract sculpture
Photo by Barbara Mattio

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A Quick Message


The bridge from grandma's house

The bridge from grandma’s house

I would like to take a moment to say I am home and before going to bed, I want to wish you all a wonderful holiday and a joyous day with your families and friends. It has been a real pleasure to “meet” all of you and you. Your blogs and comments brighten my days.

Home for the Holidays

Home for the Holidays

The Fullness of Miracles


Being in the Moment

I have been away helping a friend for a few days. That is why I haven’t blogged. But, as so often happens, those days were filled with little miracles. Small events that could go unnoticed. It is so important to be aware of the present moment. Too often we hold onto the past or look to the future. The problem is that we miss all the gifts and the little miracles that happen around us each day. We have to look for them because we are too busy rehashing the past or hoping for the future and what it may bring to us.

In the present moment, if you look for it, you will find a “domino’ effect which is bring what you need for you and at the time you need it. If you aren’t looking for these times of perfect order, you will miss the gifts the Universe has for you. These little gifts could be the right person who could become a very dear friend, someone giving you the information you don’t even know you need yet. The Universe knows though. The accident you are saved from because you listened to “the still small voice” within.

If we do not pay attention to the present, miracles pass you by like a cumulus cloud sailing across the blue sky. I also believe that the more often you recognize the little gifts that come into your life, the more you will be sent. It is also important to listen to that urge to perform an act of kindness or just sending someone a note when they suddenly come to your mind. It is easy to ignore these prompts because life is so busy with so many things to do. Working, children, homework, friends, spouses, health all take our attention and other things get lost in the swirl of activity.

This is why it is so important, to look around in the present moment and to really “see” and “hear” what is in your life. What small thing shows up that will make a huge difference. Something you couldn’t have imagined happening, yet the Universe brings it all to you at the right time and with the right people. The person from your past who shows up and your friendship and loving feelings add blessings to both of  your lives. So I encourage everyone to take a moment every day and look for what you aren’t expecting but brings many blessings to you, because you took the time to stop, breathe and to really look around you and at the people in your life. They are often used as a way to bring us the small miracles. Then keep a book of them and remember to show the Universe your gratitude. By keeping a book, you will see how much you are being given. It helps you to get through the hard days when it seems like you are all alone. In truth, we never are alone because Divinity is always within.

Chautauqua Lake, NY; Photo by Barbara Mattio

 

A Problem in our Society


I have a worry and a concern about our society and its relationship with children. Actually, it isn’t just here in America. It is everywhere in our world. Here in America, we just don’t see it as clearly.

During the course of my life, which has been fairly long, I have seen a tendency in people to look away at the uncomfortable So many people feel they must turn away from what is shocking or what is painful to see or hear about. This is not a criticism and we certainly need to balance these things with beauty and spirit. Much of what people experience in life makes others so aware of their mortality, and people don’t have the skills to handle those sorts of thoughts. The thing is that turning away doesn’t change our mortality. The truth is we are all mortal and we need to accept that.

I am not saying that this is easy or that some people won’t need help to embrace their mortality. Life is a cycle and death or mortality is part of the cycle. It is not the end, though. Life never really ends. We just won’t need this body any longer.

The lives of children have been romanticized in literature novels. The truth is that a child is such a gift to parents, communities and the world. We love our own kids but tend to not want to be bothered when they are older and not as cute or sweet as they were. The statistics of child abuse and molestation show us a very “un-Hallmark” picture of the lives of children.

When I was little, being gone all day playing with the other kids in the neighborhood, it caused no stress. We slept out all of the time on front porches and walked around the neighborhood without a worry. We didn’t get into trouble and no one bothered us. We would make up stories and tell them by flashlight to scare each other. These “scary” stories were fairy tales compared to the true stories that happen every day to children here in America and around their world. We thought the monster in the dark was our biggest worry.

Today, in the twenty-first century our children face abduction, molestation, neglect, bullying, human trafficking and indifference to their dreams.

Children are pawns in divorces, abducted from their own beds, killed in school shootings, sold into human slavery. They are often confused and angry. Many are demeaned and verbally abused as well as physically abused.

I feel we need to talk to children more, and listen much more. We need to find out what excites them and encourage their dreams. Every child deserves to be totally sure they are loved. But not smothered with love. Children need to learn independence one step at a time.

Ethics and morality should be taught, but not racism and bigotry. We need to teach our children well, how to solve problems without hatred, bullying or violence.

We, as adults need to make this a safer, less violent world. A world that doesn’t give lip service to the importance of our children. We need to make a safer world, a less violent world, and a world that looks more like the “garden.” Children’s lives should be less like hell on earth and more like a glorious adventure.

We can do this, we must do this because the children are the future. They are the most important resource we have. Really look at the Amber alerts and missing children’s poster. Think of that child as one of your own and try to realize if you saw them. Don’t avoid stories about neglected and abused children.

Even if you have no children of your own, we, as members of communities, have a responsibility to the children. Education is so important and every child needs to have the best education possible. The Einsteins, the Mozarts, the Nobel Prize winners don’t just come from wealthy families. They come from all economic backgrounds. They will learn love and respectful living from us. So let’s show them how to live without violence, hatred and anger. Everyone will benefit and there will be peace and love and compassion in our world again.

Miller’s reserve Photo by Barbara Mattio

Hygrangeas, North Carolina Photo by Barbara Mattio