Shine the Divine:

Creativity IS a Spiritual Practice

When we see through our hearts, we recognize that every single one of us is infused with creativity. Divine Sparks are embedded in everyone and everything. It's up to us to be courageous, to look and listen deeply, to find the sparks, gather and release them back into the universe, transformed into something new. Join me as we wake up to the sacred-ordinary blessings waiting to greet us each and every day.

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Monday, March 29, 2010

"There is no freedom without awe"~Heschel

Skywatch Friday

Please stop by SkyWatch Friday to view amazing sky photos from around the world.

Sometimes, buried deep in the dark and cold earth of winter it is hard to fully feel the abundant blessings in our lives. We are wrapped up tight in our own inner depths, growing beneath the surface in ways that may not be clear even to ourselves. With spring's arrival, emergence, begins. We push ourselves up out of the rain softened earth, stretching toward the heavens, experiencing freedom anew.


I love this! My sweet rabbi and friend Jon Spira-Savett sent it out with several other Heschel quotes to congregants today in the midst of Pesach and in preparation for Shabbat.

"There is no freedom without awe. We must cultivate many moments of silence to bring about one moment of expression." ~ Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel


And of course freedom looks different to us at different times in our lives. But it feels every bit as expansive in our hearts, no matter what. All of todays photos were taken the morning we arrived in PA. Gordon took me for a walk...and I did walk with my cane for quite a while (for me), but we had my chair too so I could be out and enjoy the sunshine longer.



As Gordon and I made our way through my parent's nearly silent neighborhood, taking in the astounding beauty of the budding and blossoming branches Yirah (Awe) was what we experienced. I hope these photos express that well enough for you to feel it too.

Gathered 'round the Seder table were my Mother and Father, my brother Owen and sister-in-law MaryLou, two of their daughters-Sarah and Becca (Rachel was away at college but made a skype appearance), my sister Amy and my brother-in-law Eric, their two kids-Reggie and Willie, my Aunt Sallie and Uncle Norm, my cousin Sharon and her husband Jerry and daughter Elizabeth, my cousin Joe and his wife Heather and their little ones-Alex and Zoe, my cousin Bill and his daughter Sydelle (all the way from California!), my husband Gordon, me and our daughters Belin and Rosewillow. My sister Pam lives down in Atlanta, GA and could not attend. Also at our table were all of our loved ones who are no longer physically present...Nana Reggie, Aunt BeBe, Aunt Rosie, Uncle Phil, Uncle Jody, Aunt Gloria, cousin Wendy-we felt your love as we sang dayenu and passed the antique lemon dish and tea bags and tasted Nana's sponge cake.

Last year I was unable to be in the car long enough to tolerate the 6.5 hour ride down to PA...so being with everyone this year felt like another kind of freedom!

I am continuing with my metta practice and thoroughly enjoying Sylvia's enriching teachings...they are a perfect complement to Pesach. What could be more freeing than opening our hearts to others and ourselves with kindness and compassion?

May all beings feel safe.
May all beings feel happy.
May all beings feel strong.
May all beings live with ease.

And to all my Christian friends celebrating Easter this weekend, I wish for you as much joy and love as I experienced gathered with my family this past weekend. May we all feel renewal and spiritual awakenings at this time.

36 comments:

  1. Wonderful post, Laura. Thank you for reminding us that there's nothing more freeing than opening our hearts to others. Beautifully written.

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  2. Awesome Sky Shots! Also loved the shoe shot! It's special!

    Pixellicious Photos

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  3. Sounds like a wonderful family gathering... and such blue skies for you too. The blossoms are gorgeous, i know exactly what you mean when you see them. much love x

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  4. What a wonderful Seder that must have been with so many family members gathered.
    I understand the freedom the wheelchair can bring. When we go on outings with our grandson we always bring his with us. He can go as far as he wants and we know we can get him back to the starting point with no worry as to how far is too far.

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  5. I just love the spring feeling in your pctures :-)

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  6. Beautiful! Love the spring sceneries!

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  7. Good Pesach, my dear friend.

    Love,
    Debbie

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  8. Your photos are so lovely holding the spirit of spring and new life. I love the quote about awe. As I read it my heart opened to awe and I felt what the words meant. Thank you.

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  9. Beautiful thoughts here. I love your idea that freedom feels every bit as expansive in our hearts, no matter whose, no matter how. Expansive, that is the perfect description of the feeling.

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  10. what a way to describe spring! and happy easter to you too :)

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  11. Beautiful sky photo's... Wish you a very Happy Easter

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  12. These wonderful festivals affirm the beauty of life in marvelous ways. Thanks for sharing all of this, and thanks for sharing yourself.

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  13. Lovely, lovely photos and between them and the post - well, my heart feels opened up and joyful. Thank you, Dear One - and I'm so glad you were able to visit with your family this year!!

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  14. I never tire of that color blue in your sky photos. This time of year is all about newness and what's possible. So glad you were able to make the trip to PA this year. May the coming months bring more blessings.

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  15. What a blessing to have so many of your family in one place, together, to celebrate the holiday.

    Hag Sameach!

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  16. I enjoyed my visit to this post - lovely photos and good words!

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  17. it is very nice to read all your thoughts in here....love the pictures too....hope your enjoying your freedom as much as others do...as foreigner i don't have much of that freedom in here but im still trying to be happy and cope with everything till i can finish my work here....

    wish you blessed holy friday!

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  18. Amazing post :-)

    Have a Happy Easter !!!

    (@^.^@)

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  19. So beautiful shot of the skies and spring!:-)

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  20. You have a very nice post for today.Loved all your pictures and great words.

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  21. Beautiful spring-y post...

    ...but...6.5 hours gettin' to PA and ya didn't even stop in for a cuppa joe with yer cynical yogi friend?

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  22. May you enjoy the glory of God's spring.

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  23. Hope you have a wonderful holiday. Pesach? Passover?
    I think of you a lot Laura, you are never far from my thoughts. I hope you are doing well? I've been pretty yucky. Planning on going to California sometime soon for some R and R. I need it.
    I love the blossoms. Be well.

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  24. Lovely post, Laura! I enjoy all your pictures. Thanks for sharing.

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  25. Thanks for sharing your pics - fantastic to be able to catch up with family :). I wish you well.

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  26. Very beautiful, loved the blossoms against the skies.

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  27. Such an uplifting post Laura, and the skyscapes make me feel quite liberated.

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  28. Thank you for visiting my Astoria blog. Your photos are gorgeous, and you are courageous.

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  29. I was wow'd by how many family members you celebrated with. I'm not sure my family is that large! How beautiful...

    Those photos really stopped me, mainly because I live in Western NY and our trees haven't blossomed yet. I had a split reaction: 1) How lovely! and 2) Too soon!

    I think I want to savor spring, but with our rush of warm weather, all the flowers and trees are in a race to pop up and burst forth. It's another lesson in accepting things as they are --- not wishing for them to be different.

    Thank you, Laura, for this wonderful, necessary reminder.

    Many blessings to you!

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  30. So many people have posted about Spring, flowers, renewal, awe. I am always in awe of your writing, Laura. Your strength, your willingness to uncover the seed within each form of life. Many beings walk with thick outer covering, and I am blessed to know another out there who wants to excavate the inner self in order to find true freedom.

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  31. Beautiful, insightful post, Laura. Lovely photos as well. Blossoms against the blue sky ..speaks so much about renewal and rebirth..

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  32. Oh Laura, I love these "sky" photos with the branches in them. All of them, the bare ones, the buds and the blossoms. Just beautiful!

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  33. laura those buds are breathtaking :))

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  34. Laura,
    I've been having a look around , and am in awe of the effort you put into everything. What an intentional way to live. You are truly inspiring.

    I realize that I've seen your name in comments of some shared bloggers. Hello , finally.
    I am certain I am here to stay.

    You bless

    and thank you for the kindness in my space. With kid at home , I have some blog housekeeping to do , but oh well.

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