Writings: Lighten for a moment, with Sarah Norrad

Lighten for a moment beautiful one.
Place down those shackles, tethers and bounds.
Allow all your responsibilities to release too.
For this special moment,
just be free.
The sun has risen and is touching us with her light.
We have grown and are touching the world with our own.
Lighten for a moment dear one.
This work is done more easily,
if we saw it not as heavy but as light.
Place down those shackles, tethers and bounds.
Let the wrestling match with life become a sweet dance instead.
For the sun has risen and is touching us with her light.
And we have grown and are touching the world with our own.

~ Sarah Norrad

Mount Baker sunrise – photo by Ian Byington

Writings: The two hungers

Sir Laurens van der Post, with a Bushman in the desert

Bushmen in the Kalahari Desert talk about the two “hungers.”

There is the Great Hunger and there is the Little Hunger. The Little Hunger wants food for the belly; but the Great Hunger, the greatest hunger of all, is the hunger for meaning…

There is ultimately only one thing that makes human beings deeply and profoundly bitter, and that is to have thrust upon them a life without meaning.

There is nothing wrong in searching for happiness. But of far more comfort to the soul is something greater than happiness or unhappiness, and that is meaning. Because meaning transfigures all.

Once what you are doing has for you meaning, it is irrelevant whether you’re happy or unhappy. You are content – you are not alone in your Spirit – you belong.

Laurens van der Post

[Photograph of Sir Laurens Van Der Post, with a Bushman in the Kalahari Desert.]

Writings: The Silence, by Wendell Berry

Though the air is full of singing
my head is loud
with the labor of words.

Though the season is rich
with fruit, my tongue
hungers for the sweet of speech.

Though the beech is golden
I cannot stand beside it
mute, but must say

“It is golden,” while the leaves
stir and fall with a sound
that is not a name.

It is in the silence
that my hope is, and my aim.
A song whose lines

I cannot make or sing
sounds men’s silence
like a root. Let me say

and not mourn: the world
lives in the death of speech
and sings there.

Writings: Rain, rain, and more rain…

 

Screen Shot 2016-01-08 at 11.03.54 AM
What do you do when your kid say, “Let’s go play in the rain?” Click on the picture above to see the little video…

When I was kid, I used to take my shoes off when I had to walk to the bus stop when it was raining, so my socks & shoes wouldn’t be wet all day at school. I found that I really liked walking in the rain, sloshing in the mud with the inter-toe mud & squishiness of it all, and the feeling of freedom it gave me. Of course, I never told my parents, even now.

So the picture of me, walking under my little umbrella (yes, in grade four I had an umbrella!), with my shoes tied by the laces & hanging from my shoulder, taking twice as long to get there, because it was fun…it’s a picture I have in my scrapbook of a head.

That’s why I like the little video above. Especially the English accents (when I was a kid, I was bi-dialectic – I spoke with a Southern gentleman-in-training’s drawl, and my thoughts were in a British accent)…I sure like it. See what you think.

Just another way to take a shower…

The video below reminds me of university – I was at the University of Alabama, walking home from work at the dining hall, when the rains came, warm & hard & wet, with home too far away to even walk fast or run. It was wonderful, walking in the Alabama rain.

Years later, I went on a hike with my sister’s pal Hilda in an thunderstorm in north Alabama, where we walked up the side of a hill to near the top, where the lightning was, and it was a week after I had first heard the song below. Summertime rain washes you clean, so I wanted to share that with you today!

Thanks for listening, and singing along, my friend.

Love you & so glad you’re there!
Brother Ian

Thoughts: Probably my favourite fable in the world…good? bad? who knows?

Good news? Bad news? Who knows?
Good news? Bad news? Who knows?

I’ve heard this story in several places, most notably as told by Dan Millman, Derek Sivers, and others. I feel it’s a nice cautionary tale about celebrating too early, before we know how the whole story is going to turn out, or getting down because we think we’re losing in the game. Either way, wait & see.

What do you think, dear heart?

An old man and his son worked a small farm, with only one horse to pull the plow. One day, the horse ran away.

“How terrible,” sympathized the neighbors. “What bad luck.”

“Who knows whether it is bad luck or good luck?” the farmer replied.

A week later, the horse returned from the mountains, leading five wild mares into the barn.

“What wonderful luck!” said the neighbors.

“Good luck? Bad luck? Who knows?” answered the old man.

The next day, the son, trying to tame one of the horses, fell and broke his leg.

“How terrible. What bad luck!”

“Bad luck? Good luck?”

The army came to all the farms to take the young men for war, but the farmer’s son was of no use to them, so he was spared.

“Good? Bad?”

trree