The F word

My guess is when you hear somebody mention the F word; you assume they are using a word, which rhymes with duck, tuck, truck, and a whole other list of words, which end with _uck. So if you think this is going to be about that F word, I hate to disappoint you. It isn’t. Well, not directly. Although there have been moments in my life when I have experienced something which has made me want to use that particular F word. What helped me move away from that F word was another F word – forgiveness. Some recent conversations with friends, clients, acquaintances, and even strangers at the grocery store have brought me to a place where I realize many of us choose not to forgive, have different motives for forgiving, or have not thought about how we benefit when we forgive.
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Do your best!

These words are the last of the four agreements Don Miguel Ruiz discusses in this book The Four Agreements. Sounds simple right; just do your best! This is what I tell my students all the time. I remind those I am journeying with of this all the time. This past week I had to remind myself that I was doing my best. One of the things about doing your best is recognizing that your best varies from moment to moment. My best when I was not journeying with Zoë through her diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer has been different then before this was a part of our journey together. My best when I was not trying to advocate for the restoration of my para transit services is quite different then now that I am. Last week and this past weekend as we were preparing for Zoë’s surgery and the unknowns about what she would and would not be able to do afterwards consumed quite a bit of my time and energy.
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You Are Wiser Then You Think

So often, I hear people putting themselves down for their level of education, their intelligence, or their wisdom. The truth is that each of is much wiser then we give ourselves credit for. One of the questions I ask my students every semester is “how do you know what you know?” They struggle with that question all semester, usually thinking about this question in terms of how do they know what they know in terms of their personality, their likes, dislikes, values, etc. How do they know what they know about world, national, and local news? How do they know what they know about their families? Given the biases in the reporting of the news, textbooks, the media, and just about any other source of information in the world, how do we know what we know?
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Mastering Love

This month, I have been doing a lot of reflecting on love. In part, because of where I am in my own journey. In part, because of my discussions with people about don Miguel Ruiz’s book "The Mastery of Love." For those who have not read it, I strongly encourage you to do so. While he provides you with ideas and concepts, he also provides you with some realistic ways in which one can overcome the parasites of our socialization process and transcend to a reality where emotional pain, suffering, guilt, shame, fear, jealousy, and all the other tools of civilization no longer have power over us. He strips away the "blame game" and tells us we are each responsible for our emotional suffering. Mom is not responsible. Dad is not responsible. The jerk that just cut us off on the highway is not responsible. We inherited suffering through our "civilization" process and learned to fear instead of love.
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