Sowing generous thoughts

“Westward Window”, (Mixed media, digital photography, thread) artwork by Kim Gifford          I bought this “photograph” at the Pig Barn Gallery show over the weekend, and now this wonderful little girl (and friends) are keeping an eye on me from above my desk!

I woke up the other night thinking about giving. Most of us are familiar with the idea of “Give and it will be given back to you…” and yet if we feel that we don’t have “it” (whatever that may be) then how do we give it? But giving starts in our minds. What about our thoughts? Do I give generous, big, kind, loving thoughts to the people around me? To my family? To my friends? To my associates?

A man I know had been trying to sell his camp on a local river for a long time. After a couple of years, every time I rode by his place, and saw his for sale sign, I would think, “He’s never going to sell that. The price is too high, it’s not in a good location….” A month or so ago, I finally caught myself with another thought which was, “That was not generous thinking Mary”, and I started saying, “I know that someone is going to want _______’s camp, and look forward to hearing that it sold.” As soon as I thought this, I felt so much better.

If I want a big, abundant, expansive life, I won’t get it by giving small, stingy thoughts about myself, or about any one else.  Beneath the surface of life, we really are all one. So it follows that just like I cannot think a poor, unhappy thought about someone without owning it first (after all, it is my thought so it will impact my life), I cannot think a wonderful, loving, generous thought about someone else without it positively changing me and my life as well.

P.S. a couple of days after I had the thought about the camp selling, Jack came home and said, “Guess whose place finally sold?!”

You have to sow before you can reap. You have to give before you can get”. Robert Collier

(Robert Collier wrote a number of books in the 1920’s and 30’s on the creative power of thought and they are really wonderful)

38 thoughts on “Sowing generous thoughts”

  1. …stingy thoughts about myself, or about any one else. Beneath
    the surface of life, we really are all one…

    thank you Mary for jump starting my Monday morning, your words
    are just what I needed…

    I’ve started reading- The Tools – Phil Stutz & Barry Michels-
    the subtitle is transform your problems into courage, confidence,
    and creativity…lots to digest in this book…

  2. Sheesh, how often I think grumbly thoughts and pollute my own mind. How easy it is to reach for these automatically before I ever think to think of something positive . I scrub my teeth every morning, I sometimes think I need to take a bottle brush to my mind when I do things like that and start the day fresh…so thanks, Mary but I am only human and it’s likely going to take more than a daily reminder to change this automatic reflex.
    SandyP in Canada.

  3. Hmmm…Small, stingy thoughts…I think I need to spend a few days being more consciously aware of if/when I think small stingy thoughts and then change my thinking…just like conscious gratitude (our weekend adventure!) took me to a higher level…this weekend helped me to realize that sometimes, I so automatically say ‘thank you’, that I don’t always take the moment to actually ‘FEEL’ the gratitude. This weekend I did and it was awesome…it was a great lesson for me Mary! Thank you! Trading stingy thoughts for generous ones…got it!

  4. this was a very good, much needed and appreciated reminder. I have been feeling happier in my life than I ever have before but I need to expand this joy like a loving spreading mist sprinkled with good thoughts not for them to come back to me but to help soften my soul.

    1. Christine, I love this image of a mister gently softening the soul with good thoughts. Helps us to realize our lofty goals may not be realized overnight, but that constant softening. . yes!

  5. Beautiful post Mary. Thank you for the reminder that everything truly is interconnected and that our thoughts bind us all together like a heavenly glue.

  6. Thanks for your thoughts, Mary, as always.
    Today I would ask your readers to consider a thought or prayer to our newly rescued dog, Ali. We have had Ali for 5 weeks since picking her up at her foster home in Knoxville, TN (she was rescued from a kill shelter in Alabama)…..she is now a NH Dog and loving it!!
    We just discovered a small lump on Ali’s right hip. It will be surgically removed tomorrow….the vet says it is a Mast Cell Tumor. Guess these can be anywhere from a type one (not malignant at all) to a type three (one has to be concerned)…so we are obviously hoping for the former. In any event, we ask all the kind souls, dog lovers or not, to keep Ali in your thoughts for tomorrow. Many thanks to you all and thanks again to you, Mary, for your ongoing spiritual enlightening.

    Ken & Pam
    Ali’s adopted dad and mom.

    1. Ken and Pam, my yoga candle will be lit for you and Ali this morning. I love to gaze upon the light as I practice and hold warm and loving thoughts – this morning they will be directed upon Ali that all will be well and she will come through this just fine, whole and healed.

      1. Thank you so much, Susan. You have a good and loving soul. Ali (and we) thank you so much for your kind words.

    2. Good luck and God bless to you, Pam, Ali, and your vet: here’s visualizing an easy and happy outcome. Having been through quite a scare with our family dog earlier this year (accidental poisoning~ but the power of the Flock was with us and all is well!), I can understand how you must be feeling. Sending positive thoughts!

    3. Ken, I would love to put Ali on the prayer list of the group I belong to. Is that ok with you?

      1. Ok, Ken and Pam…Ali’s on the list. Blessings to you and to her. We’ll all be sending our energy for a great prognosis!

    4. Rescued first from the kill-shelter,
      Delivered second to a forever home,
      May the triple play of love be a clean bill of health from the vet tomorrow.
      I’m holding dog biscuits in my pocket as prayer beads towards Ali’s recovery.
      RALLY, flock!

      1. Thank you so much, Cheryl, for holding the dog biscuits…in support of a ‘clean bill of health’. Ali is (and we are) very grateful.

    5. Love and prayers from Vermont going out to Ali…and, we just saw a double rainbow here…and may the pot o’ gold be good news for Ali!

  7. ” So it follows that just like I cannot think a poor, unhappy thought about someone without owning it first” – Mary those words “owning it” just jumped off the page because of a quote by Thich Nhat Hanh that I read on Saturday and couldn’t get out of my mind all weekend. He wrote:

    “My actions are my only true belongings.”
    ― Thich Nhat Hanh, Understanding Our Mind: 50 Verses on Buddhist Psychology

    Our ONLY true belongings, – I think one might add “thoughts” to that also. Everything, everything else can be take away from us. We might lose our homes, our health, our jobs, the market may crash and there goes the life savings, but our true belongings, what we really own and have to own up to, are those thoughts, and the actions – how we treat and have treated one another. They are ours. Are we weaving a beautiful fabric? I felt so so much support from everyone joining in this weekend adventure of gratitude. I love the expression “legions of angels”. I think we have a beautiful legion of friends unseen here. We are here for each other and are endeavoring to lift our thoughts and consciousness ever higher. Thank you Mary for daily inspiration and to all the flock! xoxo

    1. Goodness, Mary Rita, this happens to me often. I try to think positive peaceful thoughts (when I’m in a frame of mind to be able to do it) but the fact is, I can’t change other people’s reactions to me or my expectations of them or myself and this can and does lead to disappointment and resentment in me which leads to a grungy mind. I grew up thinking that if I just treated people well, they’d automatically treat me well in return…hmmmm, didn’t turn out that way. I guess all we can do is have a daily reminder of head and heart stuff here with Mary and keep on thinking positive thoughts…without the expectations of immediate returns.
      Loved your comment…I could have said the same thing.
      SandyP in Canada

    2. Disappointment and resentment are reflected out into the world from our insides, so water your insides with lots of Love, compassion, forgiveness, gentleness, mercy and kindness and watch for the divine seeds to grow and start to out-picture on the outside in your life! May a river of Love flow within you until you overflow into the world, join with an ocean of Love and create a tsunami of liquid Love covering the whole earth!

      1. I love your imagery too, newheavenonearth! Here in the Arizona desert, plants and trees most effectively survive by the ‘drip’ system of watering – long steady hours of a slow drip by drip of water. A quick flooding is not as effective. So maybe like us, keeping it slow, keeping it steady, we will keep ‘watering our insides’ with a continuous drip of love and compassion as you mentioned above.

  8. Mary, it was so nice meeting you over the weekend. I’m so sorry we didn’t have longer to talk. I would really love to someday. I enjoy your blog and think there is much we could share. I was a religion major at Middlebury College. I am so flattered and pleased by how taken you were with this collage and I truly mean it when I say, I’m happy to know it has a good home. It was one of my favorites. Thanks for posting it and sharing it with the world at large.

  9. Words I needed to hear today ~ thank you dear friend for sharing this story with all of us!!!

    xoxo Marian

    1. Ali, sweetheart, you have a Fan Club here this night, thanks to Daddy Ken and Mama Pam’s post – know our many, many arms are around you, giving you loves and pats, and knowing you are already oh so fine! Shine, Ali, shine! (and love and pats to Mama and Daddy too!)

  10. Sowing generous thoughts, what a lovely post Mary. I send healing thoughts to Ali for her vet visit tomorrow. Ken, I am involved in dog rescue here in Massachusetts and the owner of three dogs, I understand! Blessings, Ali

  11. Hi Mary, this is something I am really taking to heart …and Susan, the idea of a continuous drip of generousity watering our spirit is priceless. Thanks to both and all.

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