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Posts Tagged ‘inner-strength’

years ago I was afforded the opportunity to remain silent for nearly 8 days. a dear friend of mine gave me the keys to his log cabin in the Berkshires which was located in rural western Massachusetts. the time was magical, challenging, beautiful, and wildly needed.

being alone in that silence was a powerful time for me and it became the most transformative time in my life. it was there I cried out the atrocities that I faced in my childhood and began to release the pain. it was there that I found the courage to change my name and allow for further transformation. it was there that I found the inner strength to ask Michael for a divorce (the first time). it was there that I realized that I had the spirit to accomplish what I wanted to in life.

with each step and with each passing day I became profoundly  aware that I am and always will be a work in progress.  each step allowed for stretching, growing, and becoming more grounded in the person I am. the 8 days lead me to new heights and allowed me to face some very real realities too.

Mendocino CA-Sandra G. Wortzel

Mendocino, California Photo Courtesy of Sandra G. Wortzel

moving forward. . .
until this afternoon, I hadn’t realized that I haven’t had real time alone in so very long, perhaps even years. I guess I now understand why I have been feeling like I am on overload; I need to allow for more quiet in my life. while I don’t currently have 8 full days, I will take as much time as I can over the next 11 days when my sons are visiting their dad and grandmother. with work and previously scheduled plans, I have decided to treasure the quiet hours I do have.

I started by canceling three sets of plans for today and tomorrow. 🙂 I bet you are wondering what I will do with the time. this is easy to answer. I will take time just to sit in the quiet, write without distraction, and breathe a little more deeply. I will also take naps, work on some of my art, and chant. and finally, the dogs, Maddie and Magic will get some undivided attention.

“Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up
and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come.
You wait and watch and work: you don’t give up.”
~Anne Lamott

allowing for the sadness
the world has been dragging my spirit down a little bit of lately. how can it not?

once I realized that I haven’t had or taken the time I needed to center myself, I understood why I was taking the harshness as hard as I have. yes, life is not easy for someone who walks in the world as I do, but I do have the responsibility to find the light and the angels in this world. I can’t move forward in any are if I don’t take that time to nurture my own spirit.

I do have some reasons both personally and within the many worlds I exist to feel sadness. so with that in mind, I am allowing for the tears to fall. in truth, there is no container that can gather the tears, but that’s ok. I believe that tears plant seeds towards new growth. you can’t move forward without navigating the darkness. once through the darkness, all of us can slowly catch the sparks that will create more light in our worlds.

and in truth, my life has so much light too. I live in a world of angels that are doing all they can to make the world a better place. in fact, I am showing up to make our world a better place too. I, sincerely, feel blessed in the world I have and continue to create for myself.

as my teacher SARK might say, it is my job to embrace “the messy middle”; I am perfectly imperfect. so I am doing just that as I take time to listen to the quiet.

may we all move towards the light and do whatever we can to create more sparks.

with love, light, and blessings,
chava

 

 

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom. For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for others, it is a tool for exploring the kabbalistic teachings in an organized way. For me, it is a time to actively reflect on my Journey Towards Wholeness. The more I am whole, the more free I will become.  [http://t.co/dBPYjDxSGj . . . .]

Allowing for transition in all relationships takes a tremendous amount of courage.  Nine days ago, I shared that “Sometimes closing the door is not enough; sometimes the door must be locked AND barricaded too!” http://wp.me/pthnB-LD While that is absolutely true, that is not the case all the time.

Relationships can often be fluid, they evolve over time; sometimes they seem closer and sometimes farther away.

For me, the struggle is loving people in the intense way that I do when they have decided to ease out of our shared connection. Sometimes I just don’t want to let go of the close connection that ‘was’. When I am not ready or expecting a change, I often find myself mourning the loss instead of just moving forward. Outwardly I may appear to be allowing the relationship to end or to ebb and flow, but inwardly I am crushed. (I do realize that this is remnant from my childhood.)

The last three years have been full of intense loss. My heart has been shattered again and again – sometimes expectantly, but mostly not. The losses are intensely private and mostly held close. There is little reason to share my losses with others. Initially, I navigate in the best ways that I know how and when I am ready I wipe my tears and move forward. Always.

Picture by Chava

Picture by Chava

Friendships unfold or transition in their own unique way.  My goal is always to find a way to do what I have to do and move forward privately. There really is little time for a broken heart. This is my work – perhaps it always will be. The blessing is that I do have some beautiful connections in my life and most of them are quite strong.

In my journey towards wholeness, I am striving to find the inner strength to let go of that which does not serve me. Only through developing some inner strength is there hope to ease more naturally into navigating all relationships in the healthiest of ways.

In the meantime, I am grateful to those within my inner circle that allow me to enter our connection fully as I am.

With love, light, and blessings,
Chava

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Tonight we counted Day 44 of the Omer, which is 6 weeks and two days of the counting. Day 44 is referred to as Gevurah sheh b’Malkhut,  Strength within our kingdom.  A beautiful kingdom is one that is blessed with Shekhinah’s presence.  Only when God or godliness dwells where people are, is it possible for a malkhut or ’kingdom’ to exist.

Gevurah sheh b’Malkhut comes when we:

  • Find the spark
  • Create the light
  • Thrive in the warmth!

If each and every one of us navigated the world with as sense of empowerment and inner strength, our world would truly be full of light and possibilities too.  You would feel the presence of the shekhinah within each night, within each day, and within many human interactions.

Photo courtesy of Eliezar Kaplan

Photo courtesy of Eliezer Kaplan

Even in times of darkness, don’t ever stop looking for the light.  With every ounce of darkness, believe that sparks and one day light can emerge.  If you can’t believe, ask your friends to believe for you until you can find the sparks again.

May sparks emerge and may our kingdom emerge with light and warmth.

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Tonight we counted Day 37 of the Omer, which is 5 weeks and two days of the counting. Day 37 is referred to as Gevurah sheh b’Yesod, Strength within Foundation.

Emerging from all that life has to offer is similar to trying to navigate a labyrinth. Sometimes it can feel daunting to find the inner-strength and the character to travel the right path and to do the holy work of living.  Breathing deeply and being the best person I can be is part of building a strong foundation.  Drawing on the strength from within my foundation comes from walking gently and doing my part to make certain that I am doing the best I can for myself.  Only then can I do for others. Creating a beautiful foundation happens after one takes care of themselves so that they can then ultimately do for others.

Having the strength to “plant seeds of joy and light” is ultimately how one builds a strong foundation with inner strength.  My teacher Rabbi Shefa Gold instilled this very concept in me with her many teachings; in truth she wasn’t alone, I have had many great teachers.  Planting Seeds, one sacred chant composed  Rabbi Shefa Gold has impacted my spirit strongly.  It is my reminder that life’s holy work begins with planting seeds and showering those seeds with joy and light.

Let's Dig A Hole

Plant the seeds of Joy and Light; Tend them carefully day and night,
In this soil so dark and deep, I plant the dreams that Love will reap.         (Psalm 97)

http://rabbishefagold.com/Seeds.html

May we all have the capacity to plant the seeds that will ultimately reap great rewards for ourselves, our community, and our world; may we find gevurah sheh b’yesod, strength within foundation to make this happen.

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For the several years, counting the Omer has provided me the foundation to move from Passover to Shavuot.  I have probably attempted to count he Omer for roughly two decades (sometimes succeeding and sometimes not), but it was only once my children loved counting that counting has had more meaning.  Now I am able to find  meaning in the act of counting the days and sometimes in the ‘explanations’ that accompany each and every day.

 

 

You Are Love Bracelets created by Shelley Barchowitz-Godberg

You Are Love Bracelets created by                                   Shelley Barchowitz-Godberg

On Day 6, we have the opportunity to reflect on yesod she b’chesed, foundation within loving-kindness.   Are we standing strong within our own foundation?  Are we standing within our sacred ground and existing within a loving framework?  Fortunately, I am often engaged in working towards holding myself with kindness as I remember the power of my foundation.  Navigating my attitude is often a work in progress.

The inner strength,  that I have when I exist within my foundation or yesod is quite powerful.  Sometimes a gentle reminder helps to keep me moving in a positive direction.  One such example can be seen in the photo above.  Years ago, my dear friend started handing out a version of the bracelets that can be found in the photo above.   I go through stages when I give her bracelet out and I go through stages when I have to where her bracelets so that I can remember  that I am Love.  On the bracelet it reminds me to stay in-touch with what I hope my essence will in part include:

  • Self-Respect
  • Acceptance
  • Non Judgement
  • Forgiveness
  • Gratitude

The work is holy and only when I do the work of building my foundation in kindness can I find the inner strength to keep moving forward and to keep creating in a way that fuels my soul.

May each of find the yesod, the foundation, that nourishes who we are and helps us to be full of chesed, loving-kindness for both ourselves and others.

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