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“Once I thought I was wrong, but I was mistaken.” That quote is on an embroidered plaque that my niece Alicia made. The message reminds me that I’m not wrong if I learn something from whatever I did. Perfection is not required! –Joy

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Infinite dignity and worth

“The soul is the piece of us that gives each person infinite dignity and worth,” writes David Brooks in his new book. “Slavery is wrong because it obliterates a soul. Rape is not just an assault on physical molecules; it obliterates another soul. The soul yearns for goodness.” Brooks’ new book is The Second Mountain—The […]

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A joyful resting place

We long to be at home in the world, Norman Wirzba once wrote. “Our failure—as evidenced in flights to virtual worlds and the growing reliance on ‘life enhancing’ drugs, antidepressants, antacids and stress management techniques—suggests a pervasive unwillingness or inability to make this world a home, to find our places and communities, our bodies and […]

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Carve out moments of peace

It’s easy to be silent and still on a silent retreat. However, after I finished my silent retreat, I soon found, of course, that it’s more difficult to slow down after I’ve looked at my daily to-do list. I have to carve out moments of peace during each day. I remember what Thoreau once wrote: […]

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Content with silence

I found this short poem by Ansel Adams during the silent retreat I attended recently. When words become unclear, I shall focus on photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence. –Joy

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I went on a six-hour silent retreat at the Blue Spring Retreat Center in Richardson. I didn’t talk for hours—except when I puzzled over the box lunch choices from Jimmy John’s and a woman finally asked me if I wanted a turkey sandwich. “Sure,” I said. I sat in a large room at the lodge […]

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I go to the sea again

In Moby Dick, Herman Melville wrote, “Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses….then, I account it high time to get to the sea as soon as I can.” Some of us go to the […]

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“The final wisdom of life requires, not the annulment of incongruity but the achievement of serenity within and above it,” writes Reinhold Niebuhr, in his book The Irony of American History. y

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My husband, Jerry, and I are going to yoga classes. At the end of every class, the teachers says, “Namaste.” And, we return the greeting. I checked and namaste is “a gesture to send a message of peaceful spirituality to the universe in the hopes of receiving a positive message back.” In our class, we […]

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An inescapable network of mutuality

“In a real sense, all life is interrelated. All men (and women) are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly,” Martin Luther King once said. We found this quote in Martin Luther King’s book A Gift of Love.

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