Tagged Body

Oda Krohg, "By the Oslofjord," 1886 (Detail)

Be Straw

Once a poor miller was summoned to meet with a king. The summons itself must have filled him with terror. Evolutionary biologists tell us that we fear public speaking and other ways of being on the spot because we are all wired to link survival with acceptance by the tribe. And this king was the…

Let it Be

When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me. Speaking words of wisdom, let it be. And in my hour of darkness she is standing right in front of me. Speaking words of wisdom, let it be. Paul McCartney wrote this famous song about his own mother Mary, who died when…

There Must Be More

There must be more to me than this. Have you ever thought this? It’s a little moment of awakening rather than an ordinary thought—a clearing in the clouds, a a distant memory, a knowing that there is more. More to life. More to me. This realization can feel like hitting bottom. It can arise in…

Minor White, Moencopi Strata, Capitol Reef, Utah, 1962. Courtesy of The Minor White Archive, Princeton University.

The Power in Obstacles

Last week, a group of us talked about what happens when we face obstacles and difficult situations.   We agreed that no one escapes such things, and that often what happens is inside is fear, which has a powerful undertow. Signs at ocean beaches warn swimmers not to try to fight their way out of a…

A Way Out of Hell

The impermanence of life causes suffering, but permanence is hell. When I was young, I had a recurring nightmare in which I was trapped in a grid or maze.  I was not alone in the maze. Other people, including friends, were visible and in shouting distance, but we couldn’t move to really face one another. …