Yes, I sleep in a tent in the heart of the city. Yes, my family is changing. And yes, life is still life. People are still getting married. People are still dying. Yesterday I officiated a wedding and attended a funeral. Today I have a memorial service for a friend and mentor.
Since few of my readers will be at her service, I am including the closing meditation here. Martha was a damn funny gal, smart as a whip, and could dish out a tongue lashing to prove it. Meanwhile, she was quite ill for many years and gave assistance to a huge network of women, the full extent of which remains her secret.
Here is what I will say. It is as close to Martha's voice as I could muster...
I can honestly say I have never done a meditation like the one that follows. I have prepared a meditation from a few of the lessons Martha Minock taught me. In the time of silence that follows our meditation I invite you to reflect on her influence in your life.
I invite you to put both your feet on the floor, put down anything you are carrying, relax your hands onto your lap, close your eyes if you are comfortable doing so, and breathe intentionally. Take the kind of breaths that make the tension go away. Take a few of them. Let out your breath and feel soothed. (Pause.)
Try not to worry so much. Much of the planning, fretting, and mental wheel spinning we do is completely unnecessary.
The world will bob and swerve, leap and dive.
There are constant surprises. We can’t plan for them all. We can’t plan for most of them. What we should be doing with our time is keeping our minds sharp, our hearts ready to love more, and our bodies as healthy as they can be.
You are good. You could be better.
Everything you need to be better is already inside of you. You just need to dig around and find it. Strengthen it. Let out the best you.
Do not let your voice be silenced by those who don’t believe in you. Do not let someone else take away your pride in who you are. Spend your energy not in regret, nor in grudge holding. Instead, take care of those you love. Share what you know that is helpful. Give of yourself but do not give yourself away.
And life does not give lemons. Life gives all manner of beauty and wonder. And life can give you great big heaping piles of shit. Those are your choices. No lemons.
No one wants lemonade made with shit. So get it out of the way. Scoop it out, move it aside, work around it, but don’t just sit there in it. Move along and find the beauty and wonder again.
In that spirit, in Martha's spirit, let us pause in a time of silence and reflection.