Morning Trip (269)

“In my biology class, we’d talked about the definitions of life: to be classified as a living creature, a thing needs to eat, breathe, reproduce, and grow…. Fire, by that definition, is vibrantly alive. It eats everything from wood to flesh, excreting the waste as ash, and it breathes air just like a human, taking in oxygen and emitting carbon. Fire grows, and as it spreads, it creates new fires that spread out and make new fires of their own. Fire drinks gasoline and excretes cinders, if fights for territory, it loves and hates. Sometimes when I watch people trudging through their daily routines, I think that fire is more alive than they are–brighter, hotter, more sure of itself and where it wants to go. Fire doesn’t settle; fire doesn’t tolerate; fire doesn’t ‘get by.’
Fire does.
Fire is.”

–Dan Wells

Morning Trip (263)

“Experience and success don’t give you easy passage through the middle space of struggle. They only grant you a little grace, a grace that whispers, ‘This is part of the process. Stay the course.’ Experience doesn’t create even a single spark of light in the darkness of the middle space. It only instills in you a little bit of faith in your ability to navigate the dark. The middle is messy, but it’s also where the magic happens.”
–Brene Brown, Rising Strong

Morning Trip (262)

“YOUR DEFECTS

An empty mirror and your worst destructive habits,
when they are held up to each other,
that’s when the real making begins.
That’s what art and crafting are.

A tailor needs a torn garment to practice his expertise.
The trunks of trees must be cut again and again
so they can be used for fine carpentry.

Your doctor must have a broken leg to doctor.
Your defects are the ways that glory gets manifested.”

–Rumi, The Book of Love

Morning Trip (260)

“There is a witness who watches the obstreperous play of flame and eros and says, This is the dance of existence. A great mutual embrace is always happening between the eternal and what dies between essence and accident. We are all writing the book of love. All the particles of the world are in love and looking for lovers. Pieces of straw tremble in the presence of amber. Isn’t that the deal? We’re here to love each other, to deepen and unfold that capacity, to open the heart. And that means living in the witness, I’m beginning to see.”
–Coleman Barks

Morning Trip (259)

“Love has no claims. Love has no expectations. Most of us were raised to become prostitutes. We have the illusion that with good behavior, good grades, lot of awards, pretty clothes, nice smiles, we can buy love. How many ifs were you raised with? I love you if you make it through high school. I love you if you bring good grades home. Boy, would I love you if I could say my son is a doctor. You become a doctor or a lawyer, or whatever your parents never were able to become, with the illusion that they will love you more. Love can never be bought. There are people who spend their lives prostituting themselves, pleasing other people in the hope of getting love. They will shop the rest of their lives for it and they will never find it.”
–Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Morning Trip (257)

“Good vs Evil is a prominent theme in Western culture. Our myths and popular entertainment are filled with it. Again and again we see two sides struggle for supremacy in some sort of final battle where the good emerges triumphant.

The trouble with applying this concept to life is that we naturally assume we must be the good guys and we must vanquish the other side, which must be evil.

In the meantime, the other side is thinking the exact same thing. Thus, both sides gear up for the final, climactic battle. There is no middle ground nor possibility of compromise.

It is time to try something different. Let go of the obsession with conflicts and replace it with a theme that promotes peace and collaboration.

Look at life not as a series of good vs evil battles, but simply as a journey of discovery. Look at other people not as your evil opponents, but simply as travel companions.

There is no titanic struggle for supremacy where one side emerges triumphant; there is only mutual assistance among friends…where everyone wins.

Examine the conflicts you experience or witness in your life. Are they truly necessary? To what extent are they caused by the pervasive tendency to see everything in terms of conflict? Notice the ones who are most lacking in harmony are also the ones who insist upon their moral certitude and goodness. Can you transcend this limiting mode of thought?

The sacred laws of hospitality bid us welcome the guest as a member of our own family: may all beings of good will who will come within the compass of my daily round today experience welcome and the hospitality of my heart.”
–Derek Lin

Morning Trip (251)

“Stop reading. Lean back. Give me your mouth.
Your grace is as beautiful as sleep.
You move against me like a wave
That moves in sleep
Your body spreads across my brain
Like a bird-filled summer;
Not like a body, not like a separate thing,
But like a nimbus that hovers
Over every other thing in all the world.”

–Kenneth Rexroth, from When We With Sappho

Morning Trip (238)

“Watch the sunrise at least once a year, put a lot of marshmallows in your hot chocolate, lie on your back and look at the stars, never buy a coffee table you can’t put your feet on, never pass up a chance to jump on a trampoline, don’t overlook life’s small joys while searching for the big ones.”
–H. Jackson Brown Jr.