Well, I have officially survived the flu, which was awful; made it hard to get things done but also opened the door to some unusual goings on with the Winter of Plenty. Even the weather seems to be echoing the ups and downs of the end of January.
One of the things I stress in the Zen Studies is that things do not happen for a reason, it is what we choose to do with them that create the connection. That is not to say that the Universe is without intention, but that it is always up to us to be ready for chance and opportunity. Rarely, do these things arrive and all it takes is our noticing them to make things happen – there is usually more work to be taken on.
One of the best ways to make things happen is to develop patience and compassion. Both are difficult and very active virtues that require constant diligence in order to retain them – but they allow you to walk through difficult times and still get the things done that will allow you to step through a door of opportunity when it appears.
One of our families transitioned from living in a car to an apartment. They asked for bedding and you all arrived with it. The clothes closet at OASIS is filled with a wonderful array of sizes and good quality clothes. St. Rays and New City will be receiving most of the clothes from here out, the ZS will receive them and then OASIS will sort and drive the clothes over according to the wish list each center gave us. Another family is moving forward steadily with arranging employment and looks like by mind spring will be hired.
Now comes the hardest part of the Winter of Plenty – it is almost February, a time when most of us just feel bogged down by winter and somewhat depressed, and the cupboards are bare. Clothing is always welcome but we are back into a full need for food – canned, dried, and fresh. The best day to drop it off is Wednesday at Main Street Martial Arts (1282 North Main Street) because I am there all day to sort, receive and ship things off – also, one of our main families comes in on Weds for one of our programs and it is easy to get fresh fruits to them.
So…..food, food, food, gift cards to Stop & Shop or Price Rite, anything along those lines is deeply needed. I was horrified to visit one family and see that the parents were choosing to eat one meal a day so the kids could have three because it was at the end of the month.
BTW…a big thank you for all the sympathy cards that were sent to Beth and Matthew. That kind of community support is priceless. The Zen Studies is moving forward with our “Path to Wellness” program that will start appearing in the spring, I think you will like it; it is a unique way to begin to connect all our small communities through having bright and joyful things in common. Connected communities help to take care of each other because they never let anyone get so far down that they cannot get up.
That is how it works. Be well, stay well and come in some morning to the Morning Practice – we are back on 7 days a week through the middle of February as we have new participants in the 28 Day program.