Inside and out

2 cats inside and 2 out
Noah and Fred inside, Ben and Esther outside and ready to come back in.

A few years ago, I ran into a woman who was very unhappy. She’d just had a fight with the man she was living with and was going on and on about how difficult he was, and that life was so much easier when she had her own place. She said, “I was a fool to move in with him”, and reminisced about her “ideal past” with her little peaceful garden, horses, and lovely spot in the country (as compared to his home which was in a neighborhood).

This thought, while seemingly logical, was actually making her feel worse….and it wasn’t the truth. I knew her before she met this man and as much as she’d like to believe (in the very frustrating moment that she was experiencing) that she used to be calm, happy and blissfully alive living alone in her little country home, she wasn’t. She frequently complained that she was lonely and feared she’d never meet anyone; said she was tired of being responsible for everything and wished she had someone to share her life with.

Nothing (and no one) on the outside of us can bring us lasting inner peace, happiness or contentment (or make us miserable). I’ve seen this time and time again with both myself and others: thinking that some purchase, event, job, recognition, appreciation of others, move, partner, or success will lift us out of our current emotional state permanently, only to have the thrill of the situation fade and suddenly and disapointedly we find that we are feeling the same. If we don’t catch ourselves, we will then blame something that is currently in our lives and the cycle of blame continues.

We bring the dominant emotional vibration of our being with us into every activity and situation, and so if we want to really have a different life, we need to stop blaming everything on the outside and go within and discover who we really are: Divine consciousness that is connected to all of Life, Harmony, Peace and Love, and if we aren’t feeling any of these then we need to start looking for them within our own beings first.

Sometimes this can feel impossible, but if we are serious about change, a way will be shown to us. As I was falling asleep last night, the words, “You are a Divine Idea” came into my mind and they made me smile. The thought that I, Mary Muncil, am a Divine Idea. I loved that and knew it was true, not only of me, but of every one of us. So maybe try that one on for yourself today!

Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.” Mahatma Gandhi


25 thoughts on “Inside and out”

  1. Nicely said Mary, and a message everyone can use! I think we all look back and think times were better “when we …..”. But we need to count our blessings now and look forward not back!

  2. What a powerful message, Mary and very timely in my life at the moment. For whatever reason, my insides have been in a turmoil off and on for several weeks since Christmas………it might have been the three tubs of Soy Ice Cream I was eating per week in December telling myself I was celebrating Christmas when others were eating all that sweet stuff and I couldn’t… least this is a delusion that I can fool myself with….likely more relationship stress-related with a younger member of the family plus the tubs of fake ice cream…whatever…I know that when I am more at peace with myself, when I seek to see love in people that I am in conflict with, my mind and body work more harmoniously together and my digestive system is happier. This is a posting I will keep and print off as a daily meditation and reminder. I have for years sought inner peace…seeking it in the sense though of not practicing it. It does take work, I now realize.
    SandyP in Canada

  3. I love this Gandhi quote because if we have peace within, whatever is going on around us can’t take it from us.
    Amnesia comes to mind in reading about your friend…how quickly we forget things we want to forget and hold on to other things we should forget.
    Sending out thoughts to everyone for a wonderful day…
    xoxo Marian

  4. Bravo! Your writing just continues to get better and better. Tell Jon Katz that I thank him for referring us over to you. Best to you, Karen

  5. “everywhere you go, there you are” , this was the first quote that came to the surface, it isn’t a person, place or thing , it’s ME… much “power” for one little “bird”! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  6. A priceless post today, Mary. I read it, did a flashback of who I used to be decades ago, and realized that the fear of being alone that predominated my young adult life back then, has transformed itself, through living, into a love of being alone. I am not a hermit, but I so appreciate the fact that I have my friends and my family and am able to come home to my cozy apartment, close the door and be who I am without being defined by another.

    It’s great to have become old enough to begin to really “get” it. The old homilies, such as “inner peace,” finally really mean something.

    Blessings on your day, everyone.

    1. Suzanne, as a child, I, too, feared being alone. I was an only child. My parents were everything to me. Yet, through life’s experiences and lessons, I no longer fear being alone, being alone by meaning living alone. I seemed to have come full circle with that one fear. Of course, there are others…(smile).
      SandyP in Canada

      1. SandyP, I, too, am an only child. That must have more ramifications than I ever realized. And like you, I have come full circle with that fear. And again, like you, I have many others to take its place!

        Life is still good. 🙂

  7. Timely message for me today. One of our family jokes is “If I only had ______ then my life would be complete and I’d finally be happy.” It’s our way of acknowledging that “things” aren’t the answer. That being said, today my husband and I are going to look at a promising property for our future alpaca farm. 🙂

  8. You know, in the past, I often felt like I was missing something…something big and important…an emptiness I was unable to put my finger on. I lived in the hustle and bustle world of a big job that I loved, international travel, one airport to another, always tired, always stressed and craving those few moments of solitude to breathe deep, be where I wanted to be with whom I wanted to be, to relax. But, at that time, those moments were few and far between. And when I allowed myself those moments, I knew something meaningful was missing. Was I missing my Dad, my best friend Jan who had passed, a closer relationship with my husband, a child (as I was medically unable to have children), a closer relationship with God? Was it menopause, hormones, aging…what was I missing? I thought about this alot and often spoke about it with my close friends. And then I began my spiritual journey and I quickly found out that what/who I was missing was Me…I missed myself…and when I found my way back to my home, to my center, I found the most loving and peaceful and bright place…and once I came home, regained my place within myself, it takes a heck of a lot more to wander from it, and if/when I do, it is much easier to return home. I’m still uncovering and still discovering and it brings such joy. Mary, you’ve helped me transform that emptiness or void that I felt into a space. An infinite, open space to fill with as much light, as much love, as much joy as I can. And as I happily give some away, so much more replenishes me again and again. So thank you Mary, from the bottom of my heart. This post speaks to the very root of my personal awakening…so much so that it brings tears to my eyes. I send you my gratitude and my love…

    1. Dear Kathye, thanks for speaking about that impossible lonliness and the mystery of how it leads us home to such depths of love and gratitude.

    2. Kathye, I can see from your posts you’ve plumbed the depths of your soul often and it again is displayed here. What a wonderful series of comments.
      SandyP in Canada

      1. In rereading all of this today, it resonates even more deeply. Thanks so much for all of your encouraging and caring comments. They further confirm how connected we all really are and how very good that feels! It also occured to me that sometimes, when it seems we are being pulled in so many directions, we give away bits and pieces of ourselves to many different people, knowingly or not. And in my case, in the past, I simply did not save enough of me for myself! And darn it, it was time to take myself back…change my focus…bring myself home. I’m so grateful to have reached that point…set different sails…and so the journey began…

  9. Kathye, thank you, thank you for your words. What I was missing was Me. . . It made me think of the passage in the Bible that says “do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth where thieves can break in and steal, but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where thieves cannot break in and steal”. Maybe the heaven this speaks of is also a metaphor for that still, small place within our hearts where we can store the true treasures of love, truth, and peace, where no outer circumstance in our lives can break in and disrupt or carry away the peace that passes all understanding, the gift of the Holy Spirit within us.

    1. I love this Bible passage, your interpretation and metaphor, Susan. It makes so much sense. That no outsider or thief can break in and steal our spiritual treasures…the only way others can get at our peace, our joy, is if we hand it over on a silver platter…’here, take my peace, my joy, my happiness away from me’ versus our well intended sharing of our light, our love, our joy. Thank you for your thoughts on this! I love feeling this from different pespectives. For some (good) reason, I find myself very emotional today…touched deeply by Mary’s words and the comments here. Such good energy and strength!

      1. All the comments from the flock – feels like Mary offers us her light each morning, and we take from her and light our own small candle, offering its light to the next person, and on and on, across the miles. Mary, you do indeed light up our lives!

  10. thank you, Mary, for your post today. Like all of them, this one is so simple and real. . . .and yes, growth to find the truth within us is the healing we all need. Thank you for your daily goodness in sharing your love and light with us. . .the Gandhi quote is one I’ll try to remember and repeat to myself. . .

  11. Mary, I really needed this one. And Kathye, I can’t explain how touched I was by your post. It’s been a tough day and I’m so grateful for the support of this flock. And I just wanted to mention She has a very uplifting blog also.

  12. ZING!! Boi-boi-boooinnng#*?! Bulls-eye, Mary. Straight to my heart.

    And speaking of a Divine Idea, the Dalai Lama’s only west coast visit this year will be May 9 in Portland and May 10 in Eugene, OR. [for Debra Saum] Namaste.

  13. I’m getting it, slowly but surely. Thanks for all your help Mary and flock. The photo of the cats today is so sweet!

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