May 9
Everything has a beginning and
an ending.  Make your peace
with that and all will be well.

the Buddha


Today's Meditation:

One of the most important realizations of my life came when it hit me that we tend to live our lives in chapters--for lack of a better word--and that those chapters must come to an end for other chapters to be able to begin.  We are living several chapters at a time in different aspects of our lives, and each of those chapters helps to contribute to our overall lives.  Right now, for example, I recognize chapters in my professional life, in my friendships, in my relationships with family members, in my exercising, in my writing, in my reading--in virtually everything I do.

When I see life in this way, it helps me to deal gracefully with the changes that must happen in my life.  If I've grown to depend on a certain friendship, I'm able to deal gracefully with its loss when that friend moves away and we begin a new chapter, going from being friends who see each other regularly to being friends who correspond from a distance.  It was very helpful to me when I got laid off three years ago and I was able to look at the situation as an ending that I couldn't have avoided, but that opened up life for me to be able to search out a new beginning.

Hold on, the world tells us.  Hold on tight and don't let go, otherwise you may lose what you love.  Sometimes, though, losing what we love is extremely important to us, for it allows us to find something else to love, something else to give our love to and from which to receive love.  Over and over again we hear of people who lose "the love of their lives" only to meet someone even more incredible once they accepted the ending of the first relationship.

"Everything has a beginning and an ending."  Trying to deny this fact keeps us frustrated and afraid.  Accepting this fact and living this truth can help us to face life with balance and poise.  While I don't necessarily like loss, I find myself constantly looking around and wondering what will end soon, not because I want things to end, but because it's important to know where the opportunities for growth will be, and the end of some things give rise to new chances in others.

Questions to consider:

What kinds of chapters have ended in your life recently?  Have you been able to start new chapters in those areas yet?

Why are we so constantly taught to hold on to things as if they'll never end?

How might we deal with the endings in our lives in ways that acknowledges the endings and celebrates the beginnings they allow?

For further thought:

Every time you let go of something limiting,
you create space for something better.

Stephen C. Paul


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