July 20, 2013 § 14 Comments
July 18, 2013 § 7 Comments
In dwelling, live close to the ground.
In thinking, keep to the simple.
In conflict, be fair and generous.
In governing, don’t try to control.
In work, do what you enjoy.
In family life, be completely present.
Tao te Ching
June 4, 2013 § 29 Comments
To see the grandeur of the forest, to witness the grace of the soaring bird, to appreciate the beautiful simplicity of the stone wall- these are all great gifts that have come to me, again and again. An exquisite blessing.
But I have also felt something else, something more.
When I am at one with the natural world, when I lose my sense of separation and duality, everything that is false and fearful drops away.
I know what the tree knows.
I see what the soaring bird sees.
I feel the warmth of the rock in the sun.
I am as alive, as strong, as present, as I can be.
No longer simply possessing a sense of self, I am myself.
April 2, 2013 § 11 Comments
Nearly a year ago I began writing this blog. For most of that time, I have been blessed by a connection with Susan Cooper- a brilliant writer and artist- a generous soul who always seeks to shine a light on the work of others.
Susan paid me the great compliment of proposing a collaboration- her art and my words. Please go to Susan’s pages and see our entwined work. http://findingourwaynow.com/2013/04/reflections-by-thomas-ross-story-podcast.html
January 20, 2013 § 35 Comments
A cold, blue sky winter day. Sharp wind. But even from the warm shelter of my kitchen, I am drawn to step out. To take a few moments out there, outside. Reconnect.
Many years ago we built a small patio off the kitchen. A nook bordered with hemlocks, a floor of stone tiles. I have spent many hours right there, reading, sometimes writing, but mostly just being.
Today I throw on the topcoat and step into that sanctuary. And as I sit and feel the wind and the sun, the cold and the warm, I look down. And there it is.
The stone. Created so long ago, taken from its birthplace, cut into these shapes and brought here. Etched by the wind and ice, tinted by the sun and rain and the green moss that fills the channels between. A majestic work of art that its creator, God, Nature, the One, is still crafting, still shaping.
And as I lift my head, I see the trees, the sky, the light and shadows, the tumbling brown leaves. Beauty, perfection, peace.
Beneath our feet, just outside our door, in the woods, the mountains, or the city street- each precious vista, each precious moment. Waiting for us.
The beauty of this sacred world.
January 7, 2013 § 29 Comments
I have tried to write of this before and backed off. I just don’t have the words. But tonight I must try.
Dimly lit room, warm against the black and cold night outside. The house is still. I sit in solitude and listen. Time stops.
I’ve heard this music a thousand times, returning to it again and again. My refuge, my sanctuary. Redemptive. Elusive. Rapturous. As beautiful as the blue sky of day.
More than a half century ago, Miles Davis summoned Bill Evans, John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderly, Jimmy Cobb, and Paul Chambers to the studio and they made this magic. And here I am, for the thousandth time, taken away by the absolute artistry of it all. Lifted up and away.
If ever I am lost, and I need to get home, I come here and listen- and give thanks for the courage of those artists and for all who came before and after. Those who give us in their artistic creation the understanding that beauty and truth do exist.
They bring me home. As they have done tonight.
November 17, 2012 § 21 Comments
What are the words that might capture the brilliance of this morning? If they exist, who could find them?
I experience first the air. Crisp air that fills my body with its energy as I breathe it in.
The white heavy dew lying across the fields. The trees, stark and strong against the sky, standing mostly denuded but with a few clinging leaves that the emerging sun lights up like golden lanterns.
Closing my eyes, I feel the stillness, the quiet- and then a light wind across my face.
And that sky. A blue that the greatest artists could never recreate. Existing above and around me, going on and on, with a beauty that I cannot possibly describe.
In this place and in this moment, I think- who could doubt the magic and wonder of existence? What gift greater than just to be here, now?
But then for a moment, it feels like too much, more than I can bear. So I breathe- I return to myself- and I know once again.
Not too much. It is all just right.