The Wisdom of Water Lilies

 

On a walk at the zoo last week, I crossed a boardwalk bridge and noticed an elegant white waterlily blooming on the river below. Water lilies look as if they’re floating on the surface of the water, but they’re held in place by stems that extend under the water to a rhizome buried in the mud below. It seemed like a symbol of calm and serenity. I thought of how each of us, like a water lily, can root ourselves in the unseen, peaceful flow of life deep in our souls so that what is seen of our lives is a beautiful bloom.

Nurture peace, cultivate kindness, and carry the calm.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week:

 

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2021 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

Quietly and Clearly

 

“Go placidly amid the noise and the haste,

and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible without surrender

be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly;

and listen to others.”

– Max Ehrmann, “Desiderata”

 

Curious about the word placid, I looked it up and found that it means “serenely free of disturbance.” That’s what “carry the calm” means to me: It’s possible to make our way through noise and haste with our souls serenely free of disturbance.

Nurture peace, cultivate kindness, and carry the calm.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week:

 

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2021 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

A Path of Peace

 

Think toward whatever leads to hope,

to beauty,

to peace,

to gracious love.

Then move in that direction.

– kh –

 

Nurture peace, cultivate kindness, and carry the calm.

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week:

 

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2021 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

A Place of Inner Peace

 

Here’s a riddle for you:

What’s so fragile that you can break it by just saying its name?

(The answer follows this next quote.)

 

“In a world of noise, confusion and conflict,

it is necessary that there is a place of inner silence and peace,

not the peace of mere relaxation

but the peace of inner clarity and love.”

Thomas Merton

 

The answer to the riddle is:

Silence.

 

Wishing you the inner silence of peace, clarity, and love.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2021 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

Broken Dreams, Beautiful World

 

“Therefore, be at peace with God, whatever you conceive God to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.” – Max Ehrmann, “Desiderata”

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week – shadows and reflections in a double paned window:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2021 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

Peace and Possibility

 

The energy of this week lost some of its spark at the death of a lovely friend, a good, creative, and generous soul. I’m grateful for the community we shared at Art and Soul Nashville, where she was—and her memory continues to be—a joyful, hopeful part of the welcome, the creativity, the encouragement, and the peace.

Here are some thoughts on peace that I wrote a few weeks ago:

 

For Peace

I’m grateful for the gentle souls

who hear peace,

hold it in their hearts and

hum it into mine.

 

I’m grateful for the fiery souls

who envision peace,

sing it out loud and

shout its possibilities into the world.

 

I’m grateful for souls both gentle and fiery

who know peace is both deep and wide,

sometimes the gift of a whispered breeze,

sometimes a hard-won shelter in storm.

 

I pray for the holding,

the hoping,

the healing

of peace.

– KH

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week – short cat, long shadow:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2021 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

Good Cheer and a Contented Heart

 

“Peace is happiness digesting.”

Victor Hugo

 

Wishing you many moments of happiness to digest.

Nurture peace, cultivate kindness, and carry the calm.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week—a small Christmas village casting a long shadow:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2020 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

Infinite Calm and Exceeding Peace

 

Deep in the soul, below pain,

below all the distraction of life,

is a silence vast and grand –

an infinite ocean of calm,

which nothing can disturb;

nature’s own exceeding peace…

­­

R.M. Bucke

 

Nurture peace, cultivate kindness, and carry the calm.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2020 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

Give Me October

 

Give me October’s meditative haze,

Its gossamer mornings, dewy-wimpled eves…

And all is peace, peace, and plump fruitfulness.

Alfred Austin, “October” –

 

Nurture peace. Cultivate kindness.

When you can, step away from the chaos and into the calm.

Then carry that calm with you, deep in your heart.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2020 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.

In the Deep Heart’s Core

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,

And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:

Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;

And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow

Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;

There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,

And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day

I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;

While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,

I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

– W.B. Yeats –

“The Lake Isle of Innisfree”

Be still. Listen. What do you hear in your deep heart’s core?

Nurture peace. Cultivate kindness. Carry the calm.

 

Nature of the week:

Shadow of the Week – books on an end table made a profile:

If you want me to send these thoughts to your email each Sunday, simply sign up on the right.

Text and photos © 2020 Karyn Henley. All rights reserved.