The gift of curiousity

If there is one gift I would grant a child, assuming love is aleady there, then it would be curiousity.  That courage to explore new places, meet new people with an openness that builds better relationships and turns strangers into friends.

It will change their thinking and their ability to learn.  It’s the gift that will encourage them to have ideas and invent things that change the world for the better, to travel to other places and cultures with respect, and even explore other galaxies.  It will keep rocking them back in wonder at creation and the world  around them, so that even when adults, they will stop and stare at a rose, whirl a dandelion head round to see what happens, or crunch through autumn leaves .

It’s what will allow them to wait to see the butterfly emerging from a cocoon, an egg hatching, what shape the bread that rested and was kneaded makes.  It means they can never be bored, for they can stimulate their imagination  and get lost in different worlds of books and games.

It will give them the courage to take risks sometimes, to ask “what might happen if I try” – and find out that even if they fail, they can still be curious about the lessons they learned.  It encourages flexibility, and gives them the resilience to deal with uncertainty. It can turn everyday chores into adventures, and even give them the freedom to explore the big questions in life without fear (like who are we, what happens next, how can I bring peace, can I dare to be happier?)

That’s what I would give a child, if I had a magic wand. What would YOU give them?

How to become wise

A short parable showing that making a choice is better than making no choice..

Some students asked the great teacher, “How do we become wise?” 

The great teacher replied, “by making good choices.

 “How can we be sure we are making good choices,” they asked. 

Experience will teach you that.”

The students then asked, “how do we get this experience?”

“By making bad choices.”

All you need is love

I’m a fan of Marianne Williamson – her books have inspired me over the past 16 years or so.  A friend recently told me about how she walked out on to the stage after the Paris shootings, and said that we needed to send love out to the city – and that included the terrorists.  She had misread many in the the audience.

But then she wasn’t coming from the point of the audience.  She wasn’t denying the horror, she was simply coming from her truth.  She is a long standing teacher in the Course in Miracles, which teaches that what we believe, we perceive; so since she believes that ultimately love is what matters – what will transform the world – then that’s what she sees, and how she lives.  And though I may have been where those in the audience were, I just thought wow, she really lives her truth, and it’s transformed her in the process.

How we think – what we perceive – is how our lives unfold.  If love is really what matters to us, we will look for it and find it, and we will be it.  What if we lived today, looking at the world from the eyes of love, or the eyes of what we feel is missing from our life – friendship, compassion, kindness?  What if that’s all we tried to focus on being and seeing? How would our day change?

Do let me know what you chose, and how you got on…

At least, you know his name

At the fringe of the world

where rampant darkness lives,

and foot-fall runs

from searchlight’s glare,

a lifeless statue sits.

Grey dust plastered on by hate.

 

He’s five years old.

And on the edge of power,

the mothers of the world

have gathered round to watch,

as long as he has lived,

to wring their hands

with tearful fears,

their eyes wide open to

what man can do to man.

 

The statue’s past

was bombed and blasted

into shards

that whipped and ripped

his brother’s future

from a family’s heart.

While he, freeze-framed, swims

through no-man’s fogs

that makes it fearful to remember,

more dangerous to forget.

 

Thick skinned with daily life

of unread books

and monsters educated

in the art of war,

of barrel bombs that rain

Confettied buildings, people, cats,

he moves

to touch

the warming ooze

that’s on his head

(the ketchup’s red).

Then starts,

and scrapes the chilling madness

of death’s playground

onto white helmet’s safety’s seat.

 

The tearless frozen statue sits.

No lullabies of sirens

were whispered in his ear.

No prelude to this solo non-performance

in the spotlights of

our hashtag havens

for his fifteen minutes of unwanted fame.

Omran.

At least, at least

you know his name.

 

© Caroline Johnstone 2016

Look for the sunshine by Nancye Sims

Life can make choices for us.
Sometimes these choices
Seem unfair
And make us unhappy if we let them.

But in the end we control our own destiny

Because we can decide how we are going to allow

People or events to affect us.

So much of our happiness, and unhappiness,

Lies within the choices we make.

We can accept that life isn’t the way we want it to be,

Or we can work to change it so it will be.

We can walk through the shadows,

Or we can choose to smile

And to seek out the sunlight.

We can create grand dreams

That never leave the ground,

Or we can be builders of dreams that that touch the sky.

We can look at only

The negative aspects of ourselves,

Or we can lift ourselves up

By being our own best friend.

We can live in the past

Or dream about the future,

Or we can live for today.

We can give up when the road becomes difficult,

Or we can keep on going

Until the view is much better.

The choices in life are endless,

And so is the potential for happiness…….