Happy and free



May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and to that freedom for all.

You know when you just start humming a tune? This familiarity, like receiving a phone call from a comforting voice? For the past little while this prayer has come back into rotation in my mind’s playlist of songs and prayers that help me to keep light of tough moments and to slow down and exhale (sing). This prayer reminds us of our connection to all beings and things on this beautiful Earth — that we are capable of so much generosity, appreciation, and gratitude for our fellow beings — animal and non-human animal. Wishing for all beings to be happy and free means we take on the responsibility of how we think, speak, live and eat.

It is my intention, and wish for my family, to live deeply connected to nature and in connection to all beings. One day this past October, I found what I can best identify as a beautiful cooper’s hawk that had collided into one of our big picture windows on the second floor overlooking the forest. Oh no! The bird decals didn’t deter this soaring creature. The bright blue sky on that warm fall day was deceivingly reflected in the glass. I feel so responsible for having not put something better on the glass to deter a collision.

When deep sadness and remorse overcame me for this beautiful bird flying into our window, I felt the greatness of being connected to all beings, to this beautiful hawk. It still aches when I remember my boys and I looking closely at its detailed beauty, its intricate architecture of creation — an example of nature’s finest engineering of flight. I remember the unnecessary loss when I look out that window at the tall spruce trees, where down below I placed the young bird on gathered leaves to rest and return to the earth.

Shortly after this time, I gathered with beautiful women at a retreat near Algonquin Park to learn about trusting my heart, my mind, my intuition. I discovered with a deep sense of knowing that I walk with the gifts of deeply caring, compassion and curiosity. I truly started to believe in me having these attributes that guide my path in life. As I walk through the threshold of a new year, I silently repeat my intention to call my gifts to action. And for all beings to be happy and free.


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