Light a candle

Maybe you frequent TED talks? I happened upon one by Brother David Steindl-Rast, who inspired gratefulness.org. While his message might be a common one especially in today's world of Oprah and paths to inner peace, I found the act of lighting a candle online -- a new way of creating a sacred space. And why not since we can purchase items, watch a movie, or buy a goat, contribute to a village and do good -- all online.

As N. expands her vocabulary, every so often she'll say Lolo (meaning grandfather). But my dad isn't alive. There's my father-in-law, who's Grandpa and my uncle, who's Apong. On the days Lolo is frequently popping out of her mouth, A. says she must be playing with her guardian angel.
Sure, we'll light a candle in church on memorable occasions -- my Dad's birthday, death anniversary, or Father's Day. We light candles at home -- to take a breath (or get rid of an unpleasant odor). So many times, like when N. does her rendition of the "Gilmore Girls" theme song and dance, I'll remember my Dad and how much I would have loved for him to meet her. It's then that I am overcome with gratefulness for the good and bellyaching laughter-filled memories that I do have of him . . . like when we would get together for holiday pulutan (finger food), which meant a coffee table full of sashimi, wine and crispy pata. That is exactly how I want to remember him -- having a good time and shooting the bull.

So here's my online dedication to my dad. To the good ones. There's something about the act of lighting a candle -- for real or online -- that allows us to have a moment to ourselves and to celebrate our loved ones. 

Wishing you a sacred and grateful moment to light a candle.


A peaceful new year

Every night before bed, N. and I have been praying . . . May the world be filled with loving kindness, may the world be peaceful and at ease, may the world be well, may the world be happy . . . & so too our family and friends. 

During the morning hours, I'll attempt to meditate with whatever meditation master is currently on the Veria channel. N. will give a little squeeze, take a deep breath, and let it go (just like Daniel Tiger teaches her). Seconds later, she'll plop herself in my cross-legged lap and continue some seconds more with deep breaths. Meditation over. For now. 

Despite the winter freeze, there's something warm about bringing a bucket of cold in and adding droplets of food coloring to make snow art as my almost 17-month-old delights in touching the multi-colored shaved ice.  

Sorry, honey, we're not in Hawaii. But let's continue to learn together. 

Our hearts aglow, we make our new year's intention:
May we be inspired, may our hearts sing in appreciation of every breath, may we be tolerant, joyful & loving . . . & so too our family and friends.