Prayers abound…

TO ALL THOSE IN CANADA in flood-stricken areas, our prayers are with you.

To Quebec, the Gatineau, Ottawa, the Okanagan of BC, and regions in the Maritimes experiencing flooding – stay strong, stay as dry as you can, and know that we are with you in spirit as you go through this difficult time.

May the waters recede, the rains lessen, the lands dry. May kindness and caring prevail for you wherever you are. May strangers and neighbours be your helping hand, now and during the days of clean up ahead and those of building anew.

I am reminded of the lotus flower that births forth out of the depths of the watery mud to be share its magnificence, serenity, and beauty with us all.

Even now, in the midst of devastation, such birthing is possible. May it be yours.

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No more…

By: Aliana Alani ©2017

You will forgive me if I say – no more.
Forgive me, perhaps, as I turn away
From this game you seem unable, or unwilling,
To leave behind.

I have stood watch over your thirst for conquest.
Soothed your wounds of battle with my tears.
Mourned your spirits passing, bodies left in the cold of dark.

Many times the heavens turned, showering love
Like fertile seeds within the winds of sorrow
Upon the fields of story – your story
That you seem unable, or unwilling, to leave behind.

Many times did you drink from their cup gladly,
Relishing the moment, healing, even gratefully,
Only then to forget, yes again.

I have come more times than you can possibly imagine
To speak for love instead of hate
To light the way for gentler tomorrows,
And still it continues.

So you will forgive me, perhaps,
If I say – no more.

No more will I lament your passing nor watch
Sweet souls tumble to a blood-strewn earth.
No more will I bury your bones within the stars of light
That you may come to your senses and remember.

This game of war is yours and yours alone.
The courage to peace, to change, lives within.
It has always been thus, but this time it is up to you.
For next time, beloveds, you will be on your own.

You will forgive me, perhaps.
I will not come again.

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Springtime!

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For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, Spring has either sprung (depending on where you are) or is just around the corner. Birds are chirping their way back into our awareness, and buds are teasing forth on trees for all to see. It is time for jackets instead of coats and runners instead of boots, if we’re lucky. April can be a fickle month in the North so it’s always up for grabs. All of which means, don’t put those shovels away just yet, cuz ya just never know.

Traditionally Spring is a time of beginnings. So let’s begin to envision the positive. Let’s envision a peaceful world, a happy one, and let’s dare to open even more to serenity and kindness in ourselves and in our lives, no matter how crazy things might appear to be. And yes, they do appear to be incredibly crazy. But…

The old is slipping away. The new is being born.

Because it’s the start of APRIL, I’ve changed things on the WHAT’S NEW page. Check it out by clicking here. WHAT’S NEW And the Poetry page has a different entry as well. Poetry   If any of it speaks to you, if you want more info or want to buy, just email me at 22shangrila.com.

So here’s to Spring! Let’s plant seeds of loving wherever we can. Then let’s help them prosper, flourish, and grow. Loving. Believe it or not, it’s what we do best.

Namaste, & may happy moments be yours.

A Light in the Window

                                                                    ©Aliana Alani 2017

I have just put up a  new page called, A Light in the Window – a call of love in action to all – inspired by a woman in Ireland many  years ago – Mary Robinson. A light in the window is a call to – BE A LIGHT UNTO YOUR WORLD – to take a stand for kindness and love here and now.

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LET’S IMAGINE, YOU & I…

PUTTING A LAMP in the window of our homes, and turning it on – a soft glow that shines for all to see – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all year round. A light, that by its very burning, says here stands a home for decency, kindness, and caring.  Here shines a light of peace and love for all.

To learn more about what this is all about, please go to the page A Light in the Window If it touches your heart, turn on that light – and share this posting (and the ones to come) wherever you can. And bless you for doing so.

Tempests and The North

     by: Aliana Alani ©2017brewing-storm-with-lightening-and-tree

 

Tempests, when they brew, have a tendency to swirl and spit, which can sometimes fly, the spit that is, and sometimes far. When tempest spit lands, at this point being a rather toxic substance, it can oft times burn. It also has a nasty habit of starting little tempests of its own.

Tempests like to gather momentum, pulling from the energy around them. It matters not what devastation is left behind. A tempest simply wants and so must have. It likes to grow. It’s in its nature. Tempests, it is worth noting, are generally not there for happy endings.

So here we are. standing midst a developing world of brewing tempests – some in their oh-so-tiny phase, others gathering lightening-speed momentum. One only has to glance south to recognize this. Given the instant access of social media and online news (some true, some not) that can inundate one before realizing it with an unexpected tempest fury, it is perhaps important to take a deep breath, stop, and remember what truly matters in our lives, who we are as individuals (and as a country), and where we choose to place our focus and actions – ideally, one hopes, for the betterment of all.

That thought brings me to The North.

Though some might say otherwise, ours is not a perfect land. Resplendent in natural beauty, our choices have not always been wise. There is fallow ground crying for seeds of caring to be sown. Areas needing nurturing more than others.  And there are wounds still to be healed. Gratitude to be offered. And forgiveness to be given. Like all people and places in this world, here too love is needed.maple leaf

Still, we carry within a kindness, a genuine decency and caring that for whatever reason seems to waft strongly through the air and song lines of this place we call, CANADA. It is a gift given to us by all that is sacred in this land. It burns unconditionally, like a small flame, calling. And it is possible that because of it, we who live here have an ongoing opportunity, perhaps even an obligation, to share this caring through acts of kindness and compassion with each other, and with this world.

Never has such kindness been needed more than now.

With that in mind, let us not import a negative eye, no matter where it comes from.  Let us instead support a positive vision. Let us not adopt the ranting and raving of others. Let us speak in tones of genuine caring and compassion. Let us, with our words and thoughts and deeds, empower, inspire, and uplift. Let each of us, and hence this country, be the constant calm in the middle of the storm.

I believe that areas of this planet carry within qualities and keys that when recognized, honoured, and truly embodied, support the blossoming and prospering of our world into its true essence and story. When that happens, and it will, we will know without question the amazing garden of love and beauty we all live in. We will know it for we will finally be living it at that level of being ourselves.

If our key here in The North, in Canada, is one of kindness and caring, let us dare to live its song fully, let us courageously walk the gentle rhythm of its melody day by day – for the sheer honour of doing so, and for the pure joy of being one with it. Let us humbly and gratefully be the loving calm within the storm.

Merry Christmas – Happy Holidays

 

For those of you who celebrate this time of year – may the true spirit of Christmas fill your hearts and grace your days during this special time.  May laughter, joy, and magic ring throughout each moment. And whether your Christmas is ringed with winter white or island palms, may love and harmony prevail.

 

 

To all in this beautiful often fragile world – I wish you great joy, unending peace, and a life filled with kindness and love.

May your Christmas be merry. May your Holiday be bright.

 

for New Zealand…

This article (and its added poem, which I posted here years ago) is long, so I hope you will hang in and continue reading. And if it strikes a chord in your heart, please share. It is my feeling that New Zealand could use your prayers today.

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I AWOKE THIS MORNING to learn of the latest earthquake in New Zealand, a country that, as many know, is prone to such things. Some report it as a 7.5, others as a 7.8. Either way you look at it, it was large. Unlike the Christchurch earthquake, this one was inland and deeper. It was also bigger. The subsequent aftershocks have been large, shallow, and some have migrated northward. And there have been beginning tsunamis and casualties.

BACKTRACK, IF YOU WILL, to 2011. This time I wasn’t on the other side of the ocean. I was landing in Auckland – two hours after the Christchurch earthquake hit. As I watched the story unfold day after day for the next two weeks with all its aftershocks and increasingly bleak coverage, and as I personally walked small forest trails and ocean’s black sands, stared at calm sunsets and wild cloudy skies, I found myself touched beyond measure.

THIS WRITING BELOW feels as important to me now as it did then. As I read it again, I couldn’t help but feel that tucked within, there is perhaps a message for us all. It is a small homage to the spirit and heart of the Land of the Long White Cloud and of its people. New Zealanders, in my experience, are a strong kind people. That doesn’t mean your prayers and caring aren’t needed. So again, if this writing touches you, feel free to pass it on. Perhaps in the telling its heart song will help ease the way a little.

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       LAND OF THE LONG WHITE CLOUD

                                                                                                                  ©Aliana Alani 2011

 

LAND OF THE LONG WHITE CLOUD – AOTEAROA – Where stories linger like slender strings of tiny ocean pearls within your billowy sleeves of cloudlike memory. Where sky and sea walk hand in hand and in their mirage-like mist worlds both old and new appear to hover, and on their very edges ethereal doors stand ready to be entered, to share gifts perhaps waiting to be given. Is it but a dream to feel this way? And yet somehow, I think not.

                Kia Ora, you say.

                Aloha, I answer. For that is what I know in my heart.

Heart – the door you offer, at least to me – the chance to enter a land of ancient openness and be at peace, to walk with ease again along the corridors of time. As if a jewel had been here patiently waiting to be retrieved and lived anew. Strange to find you now, for I have landed on your shores when the earth is rumbling mightily and the ring of shifting sands and olden fissures is making itself known. Breaking through the seeming solidness of life and coughing up its innards for the entire world to see.

                Kia Kaha, you say, for you have been through this before and know no fear.

Is that the opportunity, when all else falls away, to know no fear? To know that life always begins anew, that if we open our hearts and trust the birth, it can perhaps be even better than before, that we are strong in spirit no matter what?

I am touched by the hearts of people on this land of yours, Oh Long White Cloud. Touched by their generosity and kindness in the midst of devastation – their willingness to reach out and help another. It is the humaneness within humanity, is it not – to offer aid without question or condition? Too often we forget this as we stride our world of ever-increasing gadgets and sound bites. Your people are helping us to remember.

Ke Aloha Aotearoa, your beauty is astounding. Gods have walked upon your earth and fished in your waters. Songs have been sung in your honour and winds have dashed your shores. Mountains high and long have risen dressed in snowy garments. And films have told stories of Middle Earths and Hobbit kingdoms. You are part of a realm we now call, The Pacific. But somehow you are part of something else as well. It lives within the very fabric of your air, and hence within the fabric of your people. Amongst all else, it is a strength of heart and the never-ending ability to dare to weave new story into life, no matter what. A wondrous gift this is for the world to see and feel. Thank you for bringing it to our table.

Kia Kaha, Aotearoa, Land of the Long White Cloud. Kia Kaha New Zealand.

You are loved.

 

 

 

It’s a Day of Love.

And yes, it’s also Sunday.

Let this Day of Love be an overflowing waterfall of kindness, compassion, and deep heartfelt communion – with yourself, with others, with your world.

Water the garden of your life with Love until everything begins to heal and flourish again – until Love, Divine and everlasting, becomes the guiding light within all you are and do.

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You are this Love. Remember that.

Let it shine brightly. Let Love prevail.

Waves of Love & Gratitude…

single-red-rose-3TODAY IS SUNDAY – our LET’S MAKE SUNDAY A DAY OF LOVE day. Whether we share that love with those close to our hearts, or with casual friends or strangers through kindness and compassion, it is a day where we choose to allow Love to be the guiding light within out lives.

In a world currently up to its proverbial rafters in drama, let alone the real pain and suffering so many are going through, Love is needed more than ever. To see the other through the eyes of Love is to give our hearts a chance to open to the world as it is meant to be. It is an opportunity to offer the one gift you can truly give that can know no bounds – the Love That Passeth All Understanding. Touch that within yourself, allow it to flow forth unconditionally, and you will have found the door to Home.

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Here in the Great White North  – not so white yet but large and definitely North – it is also THANKSGIVING WEEKEND – a time of gratitude when we acknowledge, appreciate, and give thanks for all that has been given to us. We give thanks for the kindnesses that have been offered, for the food on our tables, the friendships that prosper, and the blessings that have been given. And for the opportunity each day provides for us to share our gifts and our love with the world.

And so I thank you, each and everyone of you, wherever you may be, for your courage and willingness to step beyond the norm, to share your kindness with others, your laughter, your joy, your smile;  to dare to love, and in loving, nourish your visions of a world of harmony, balance, and yes, even peace – so that one day, hopefully very soon, those visions will have become our reality.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO YOU ALL!

Remember

Love is the answer.

Always has been.         Always will be.

Need I say…?

It’s Sunday AGAIN. WOW, how could that be, and so soon after last week. Did time fly? Did the birds flutter faster into tomorrow? Did we hit the warp speed button and we don’t remember? No matter, it is Sunday and what does that make it for us lovers of a world of love – that’s right – it makes it LET’S MAKE SUNDAY A DAY OF LOVE day.single-red-rose-3

So get out there. Shake a few hands, hug a few people, tell them you love them, smile that radiant smile of yours and let it nourish you and your world. Cast a glow of love like a fisherman’s net into the beyond so that it can bring forth a song of happiness and joy.

And remember, every moment is THE moment – no matter what it looks like out there. So open your heart. Dare to dream the great dream. Dare to imagine it into being. And most important, dare to love.

Remember

Love is the answer.

Always has been.       Always will be.

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