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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The Soul's Rhythm - John O'Donohue


We should not force ourselves to change by hammering our
lives into any predetermined shape.  We do not need to operate
according to the idea of a predetermined program or plan for our
lives.  Rather, we need to practice a new art of attention to our
inner rhythm of our days and lives.  This attention brings a new
awareness of our own human and divine presence.

It is far more creative to work with the idea of mindfulness than
with the idea of will. Too often people try to change their lives
by using the will as a kind of hammer to beat their life into proper
shape.  The intellect identifies the goal of the program, and the
will accordingly forces the life into shape.  This way of approaching
the sacredness of one's own presence is externalistic and violent.
It brings you falsely outside of your own self and you can spend
years lost in the wilderness of your own mechanical, spiritual
programs.  You can perish in a famine of your own making.

If you work with a different rhythm, you will come easily and
naturally home to your self.  Your soul knows the geography of
your destiny.  Your soul alone has a map of your future, therefore
you can trust this indirect, oblique side of your self.  If you do,
it will take you where you need to go, but more importantly it will
teach you a kindness of rhythm in your journey.  There are no
general principles for this art of being.  Yet the signature of this
unique journey is inscribed deeply in each soul.  If you attend to
your self and seek to come into your own presence, you will find
exactly the right rhythm for your life.  The senses are generous
pathways which can bring you home.

John O'Donohue
from Anam Cara



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