The most difficult stranger to welcome

drawing of woman looking into a mirror

“Maybe the most difficult stranger to welcome is the one who lives inside us.” ~Mirabai Starr, from God of Love: A Guide to the Heart of Judaism, Christianity and Islam

How do you deal with those parts of yourself that you don’t like? It’s only through welcoming them in that we have the opportunity to transform them.

How could you better welcome the stranger inside of you?

 

Art work credit: https://pixabay.com/en/woman-art-abstract-vintage-girl-2068125/

What makes compassion real

two people's hands holding one another in a comforting pose

“Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.” ~Pema Chödrön

True compassion requires that we be present with all of people, including their darkness, which often shows itself most strongly when they are afraid and in pain. To do that, we must get to know our own darkness and develop compassion for that part of ourselves first. It’s the hardest kind of compassion to develop, but it’s one of the gifts available to us through kintsugi living.

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Be grateful for whoever comes

an open doorway in stone wall looking through to sky and trees

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
~Rumi

Oh, how hard we try to edit out of our experience all that we find to be unpleasant, unacceptable, or uncomfortable. We push those things into our shadow and try to pretend that they don’t exist.

But those uncomfortable parts of our experience have much to teach us if we would but welcome them in and be ready to learn from what we find there. It is only by bringing our shadows into the light that they surrender their healing gifts.

What parts of your experience need to be invited in, greeted with laughter, and allowed to guide you into growth and healing?

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