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Making a New Start

--by Patty De Llosa (Jan 25, 2011)


Making a new start isn’t starting ‘again.’ There’s no ‘again’ about it. New is new. But by now I’ve learned how quickly I slip back into the old, so making a new start needs constant renewing. That means I have to work at the ‘new’ part when everything calls me back to old ways. As F. M. Alexander said, “Change involves carrying out an activity against the habits of life.”

I’m hard put to find words to describe this active work of renewal, so I’ll try to recount the experience itself. First, there’s the moment of truth: I’ve connected with my life on a deeper level than before. Then there’s the vision awakened by the experience. I’ve understood something and been given a new opportunity to live by it, to base my life on that vision.

However, clarity fades away like a receding tide as old habits of thought and feeling come flooding back in. How to withstand their undertow? Is direct combat a viable solution? I’ve tried it, of course, but it’s like doing battle with a big wave rather than diving through it and I’ve been swept away many a time.

I call my new way to work with it “planting seeds of change.” Every time I wake up to the Old, I find some way to plant a seed of New, even if there’s little else I can do against the force of habit. For example, this morning I noticed my demandingness, the Autocrat in action, and tried to take a step back, an inner withdrawal of belief in him. I’m not trying to shoot him down. He’s too powerful for that! But I’m separating out from him – into him and me – as I take notes on what he wants. When his aims become clear, I ask myself, “Do I want what he wants?” Perhaps not. A seed has been planted.

Or let’s say my old nemesis, Mrs. Rigid, appears, clutching her rulebook and telling me just how things ought to be done. I take a step away before she has a chance to swallow me up, and remind myself how terrified she is of change. That’s what makes her rigid. But I don’t have to be stuck in her narrow-minded world, or follow the same laws she does. Another seed.

When will these new seeds sprout? How big will the fruit or flower be? No idea. Perhaps it’s not for me to know at my level of engagement. But I decide to trust that planting new seeds into the old way of doing things will say ‘yes’ to the deep wish to live differently. The wish touched me as lightly as the brush of a butterfly’s wing, or the swish of my cat’s tail to let me know he’s gone by.

A new beginning needs food. You have to nourish it each day. Easier said than done, of course! My head can make lists with Meditation and Walks in the Park in capital letters, but making lists is easy. So the question is, how to awaken that new vision right in the middle of the action?

--Patty De Llosa


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8 Previous Reflections:

 
On Apr 28, 2011 kavita wrote:

I just loved this passage.I know what it is to be drowned in the deluge of emotions of the past and how insignificant it makes you feel when you try to overcome old habits you want to change.The feeling of worthlessness just takes deeper roots everytime you fail conquering/changing the past.This passage is such a refreshing way of looking things and finding it on a day when I neede it the most makes it all the more special.I will definitelt try and implement it.



On Mar 18, 2011 sumit wrote:

Reading this Energy Worth More than anything & everything. excellent thought process about change.

Because Nothing is Permanent in this world except Change.



On Feb 19, 2011 ademola wrote:

 stating a new life depend on once conclusion to live the old and face anew 



On Jan 31, 2011 Pancho wrote:

My family calls me Pancho and I'd like you to know that I love you all.  Once again I felt like sharing space/time in a different way on Wednesdays. Hermano Rahul did a great opening and I had to follow. I did it in silence ;-) but this is what was flowing on my mind and heart at the time the mic was passing through me:  1. Penetrating Insight 2. The New Renaissance of Humanity 3. Healthy Food and Meditation 1. Penetrating Insight   "The courage to penetrate and power to see clearly the meaning of things hidden beyond the situation prevailing around us and to act up to the discovered meaning is what is known as revolutionary insight ... Revolution can take place only where there is this power of penetrating insight." -- Vinoba Bhave   If we are skillful, patient enough and brave enough to penetrate beyond and within our habits, the (R)evolution in our lives will be inevitable. 2. The New Renaissance of Humanity When Galile  See full.

My family calls me Pancho and I'd like you to know that I love you all. 

Once again I felt like sharing space/time in a different way on Wednesdays. Hermano Rahul did a great opening and I had to follow. I did it in silence ;-) but this is what was flowing on my mind and heart at the time the mic was passing through me: 

1. Penetrating Insight
2. The New Renaissance of Humanity
3. Healthy Food and Meditation

1. Penetrating Insight
 
"The courage to penetrate and power to see clearly the meaning of things hidden beyond the situation prevailing around us and to act up to the discovered meaning is what is known as revolutionary insight ... Revolution can take place only where there is this power of penetrating insight." -- Vinoba Bhave
 
If we are skillful, patient enough and brave enough to penetrate beyond and within our habits, the (R)evolution in our lives will be inevitable.

2. The New Renaissance of Humanity
When Galileo discovered the fascinating worlds of Callisto, Ganymede, Europa and Io orbiting Jupiter, the perspective of Humanity changed forever. In the West, this discovery of the Galilean moons proved that the Earth and humans were not the center of the Universe --the insight and reasoning of Copernicus were correct-- it called into question the oppressive-obscurantist system of the Inquisition and thus opened the road to the Renaissance.
 
Just a few decades ago, our species ventured into space to look back and see ourselves as one people sharing a common destiny on a living spaceship, the Earth. Nowadays, we are trying to put the Solar System in context by finding planets orbiting other stars. The discovery of these extrasolar planets are opening the door of our collective consciousness. How come?
 
Imagine that we are building a catalogue of Earth-like planets and Super Earths --a terrestrial planet a few times the mass of the Earth-- and we human beings start to understand that it does not matter what country, religion or sexual orientation we are but what matters is being a responsible citizen of the World. We are starting to respect the wisdom of all people and the wisdom of all species. Through compassion, interdependence and biomimicry--mimicking the wisdom of the species of the Planet-- we are seeing clearer that the Earth is but one country and all living beings its citizens. 
 
I strongly believe we are living now the New Renaissance of Humanity.
 
Both Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. were very clear about this of citizenship of the World:
 
"I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak of the -- for the poor of America who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home, and death and corruption in Vietnam. I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as one who loves America, to the leaders of our own nation: The great initiative in this war is ours; the initiative to stop it must be ours."--Martin Luther King Jr.
 
"The very right to live is only afforded to us if we fulfill our duty as citizens of the world. Nationalism is not the highest concept. The highest concept is a worldcommunity."-- M.K. Gandhi 

 
3. Healthy Food and Meditation
Six decades ago, people in the part of the planet we call India were part of a nonviolent revolution. Sometimes is overlooked the importance that had Gandhi's constructive program to move towards independence and self-reliance. It was because every person regardless of age, social class or gender had the opportunity to get involved somehow in the chain of cloth production, from sowing the seeds of cotton to wearing the hand-made cloth that boycotting the British colonial rule was a success.
 
Likewise, now at a planetary scale, we must achieve food sovereignty to break the shackles of the transnational corporate rule. Profits for the few and environmental destruction for all of us is not an option anymore. Neither genetically modified crops, chemical fertilizers, toxic pesticides and some stunning combinations of the three. It is a myth that vast single crop plantation sized fields can produce enough food in the long term to feed the entire World.
 
While it is necessary to stand up and resist the tyrants of the World with noncooperation, boycotts and civil disobedience, to co-create the alternatives we would like to see and that will give us full self-sufficiency is of vital importance.
 
“We find that our work to build a better food system in the [part of the Planet we call] United States is inextricably linked to the struggle for workers’ rights, immigrant rights, women’s rights, the fight to dismantle racism in our communities, and the struggle for sovereignty in indigenous communities. We find that in order to create a better food system, we must break up the corporate control of our seeds, land, water, and  natural resources.” -- Statement from the People’s Movement Assembly on Food Sovereignty, US Social Forum 2010, Detroit, Michigan.
 
Food autonomy is the key answer to hunger, economic disparity and climate change. It is a powerful alternative to export-driven industrial agriculture. There are many alternatives to the disastrous current food system that starts with justice for farmers and farm workers and ends with the right and access to local, healthy food.
 
Since our generation is seeking the Total (R)evolution of the Human Spirit, it is necessary to add another dimension, the inner dimension: we all could spend some hours a day in receptive silence. This is a kind of healthy food for the soul and it can be done by everyone.
 
The author mentions food and meditation. 
 
These are the two key factors to Planetize the Movement of the Ahimsa (R)evolution. The center of the galaxy of the independence movement of the Earth Community. We all can participate in one way or another in the chain of healthy food --seed banks, preparing the land to plant, starts and greenhouses, designing water catch systems, watering the crops, dry farming, weeding (or not), harvesting, cleaning the produce, farmer’s market, preparing the food, eating, washing dishes, mulching and composting--  and, at the same time, we all can spend some time to be in receptive silence accessing the blueprints of humanity.
 
May all become compassionate, courageous and wise.
Pancho

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On Jan 31, 2011 Varsha wrote:

Reading this made me remember:

"Perplexity is the beginning of knowledge."  --Kahlil Gibran

Not knowing something is a great freedom, because the innate curiosity can work and it's wonderful to find out something new through first-hand experience.

"Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end."  --Seneca

I also think of seeds and starts (baby plants that usually begin indoors, or in a greenhouse).  In order to make a new start in anything, one has to be vulnerable (uncertain) on some level.  For the seed to sprout, it needs the right atmosphere or conditions (sunlight, water, soil nutrients), but also needs love and care, which are the ingredients in life that come from the heart.  



On Jan 31, 2011 Ning. 121525 wrote:

All words are so natural and like sign me a weak up (Reborn). Knocking my heart the way you already spell you hard tears. sometime feel and i know i have two hands, legs  when i try to define, Nothing i have. Just I have five, five  finger and so many dreams. I never wanna forget it, i burn seed just waiting for rain. It's not my time but i am still "hardness one day give me the way dark to light". Star is not sun of son, star is sun of midnight moon.

Thank you so much

"memory never die" thanks again for giving Golden inspire...

God Bless You & Wish You One Seed At A time and Burn Success.



On Jan 28, 2011 Lance wrote:

Thank you for this. It gave me a way to change myself for the ones that are dear to me. Once again, thank you.



On Jan 25, 2011 Stephanie Y. Cox wrote:

Hi!   I have been struggling with change or "new start" problems and praying for new insight because all of my old methods only served to help me "fail" and stay mired.

Your approach to change sounds refreshing, hopeful and do- able.  

Thank you,

One seed at a time.

Thank you.

Stephanie