97 Comments
Mar 24Liked by Carrie Newcomer

Thank you Carrie. Wisdom here. I have held the one and been flabbergasted by the other. Maybe I don't need to understand it, just acknowledge it, name it, and then love more deeply. Peace to you.

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When I feel the ‘good egg’ in you, it makes my ‘good eggness’ want to come out and play. And may the Beloved remind me of my ‘good eggness’ so that it will invite your ‘good egg’ to come out and play, too.

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A folksy riff on “namaste,” Kate! Love it.

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I really looove “good eggness” I’m going to use this now in my conversations with friends, Namaste and good eggness to you!

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Mar 24Liked by Carrie Newcomer

May you know joy today.

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Yes… and as a pastor, hearing people who profess to be Christian say that Jesus’ most foundational teachings about peace and justice aren’t relevant anymore—it’s all about power now. It’s bewildering and maddening. So much to grieve.

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Thank you so much, MaryAnn. I love reading your Substack page and it’s always a source a thoughtfulness and wisdom. Yes, as a pastor, or for any person who has been moved, or their lives have been touched by the gospels, it is bewildering time to see the most powerful and life-giving teachings pushed to the side for an embracing of a political movement, yes we keep pondering together. Thanks again for your wonderful Substack post and for joining us here at the gathering spirits sometimes.

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Such a splendid post. Thank you, dear Carrie.

"We are all walking each other home".

I am reminded of your poem, " I Don’t Know Why ".

I have observed that when we have a national disaster of some sort people from all over the nation drop what they have been doing and come to help the folks they don’t know. The volunteers are of all colors and faiths. We still have it in us to arise.

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Yes, I’m always touched by the news of the heart when we hear about people come together to help those who need it most. Whether it’s in my local town for our amazing Hoosier Hills Food Bank, or floods or other kinds of the personal challenges that affect lives. It’s there and I think it’s our default. But then again, I’m a folksinger :-)

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Once again you made my heart sing with your writing. It is not easy in this world right now but we must keep looking and keep being the goodness. But we cannot keep quiet when wrong is wrong. The quote came into my mind from John Lewis: "Speak up, speak out, be courageous. What can you do to get into good trouble? There is a light inside of you that will turn on when you get into good trouble. You will feel emboldened and freed." Let's all go and make "good trouble".

Thank you Carrie. You made me feel hopeful and joyful. That is a true blessing.

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I so love that John Lewis quote. Yes may we all step forward in love and even seek out good trouble.

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Before reading your post this morning, in my morning meditation I wrote that recognizing the both / and of life is somehow comforting. It's not easy to understand how far off balance our world has gotten, yet there are still small acts of kindness, beauty and wonder that help to sustain us to "hope" us to take the next step. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability and deeply felt honest reflections.

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Synchronicity is when the Cosmos winks :-). Thank you for posting and for affirming it actually did feel kind of vulnerable, so I really appreciate your recognition of that and lovely words.

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Mar 24Liked by Carrie Newcomer

Carrie, your words and your music both inspire and encourage me.

Thank you for lifting up this moment in time as significant, then offering opportunities for me (and for each of us) to consider what deliberate actions I/we can take this day to make a positive witness for

peace.

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I have a practice I sometimes use that I call Two Stones Wisdom. I hold a stone in each hand that are different from each other in texture or temperature, (warm/cool, or rough/smooth) to notice bodily that I can experience two different things at once and both are simultaneously true. I think I need to revisit this practice weekly as we enter a political season where I see otherwise kind-hearted people I love embracing things that are so incongruent with their lives.

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Beautiful practice, Jeff. I collect stones, and have many in my home. I will join you in this practice, seeking to shine the light on kind and loving actions, while calling on my community to focus on the common good, and put aside the senseless rancor. As Carrie says so perfectly, "May we all find the mercy we've been longing for."

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Thank you, Margo! I hope this practice is meaningful to you. And yes, may we all find mercy.

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I also love this beautiful practice. I do something similar as a meditation. But I love the idea of using stones which are of the Earth and grounding. Thank you so much.

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Jeff, Thanks for sharing a wonderful idea. I also have a wide variety of stones here and there, from great distances and from just around the corner. I look forward to a new practice based on your suggestion, and also incorporating the distraction of mass/weight... if we can hold the message from "light-as-a-feather" as respectfully as the one that casts a large shadow. Your wisdom also appears at a good time. Thank you.

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Thank you so much, Mike. Best of luck with this practice. And it means more than you know that something I said showed at the right time for you.

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Jeff, I love this. I do something similar (one stone) to teach mindfulness/relaxation for people whose brains and nervous systems are so practiced at responding to threats (fight/flight/freeze/collapse) that even breathing and relaxation feel threatening. But I'd never thought of adding a contrast -- I love the extra dimension of holding the two stones, as a both/and dialectic. Thanks for the idea!

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Mischa, I love that you are teaching mindfulness to people who really need it. I created this practice after exploring with my therapist that someone could be a loving and good person, parent, partner etc. AND have mental health issues or limited capacity to respond appropriately. I hope this practice is meaningful to you and others. Thank you for sharing your message with me.

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I loved this post - that is all!

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I am here. I do care. I am with you no matter and I will name the shadow and shine the light on it inside of me and in this world.

We Are All Just Walking Each Other Home.

Blessings Carrie for articulating exactly my daily conversation inside about why, how, and what to do.

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Thank you for being here with this thoughtful community. Yes we are all just walking each other home.

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I strive to always "lean in toward the Light" and hold the space for the Loving and the Light prevail! Carrie, you too are a Light Bearer as are many people known and unknown to us! Together we can outshine the darkness! Namaste!

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Yes, together… We cannot shine the darkness, maybe we all keep leaning into the light

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Oh, Carrie … Words matter and your words and music illuminate all that is true, beautiful, good, even as you have the courage to name the bewilderment and hatred that must be named. May we hold the painful perplexing both/and in creative tension - living in hope, trusting the love that’s stronger than the hate- Deep bow to you and heartfelt thanks for reminding us - we can do this hard thing … together! And heartfelt thanks again for all the wisdom and beauty you shared at Shallowford in February- Oh, honey … the wisdom of the heart can be trusted to be true! ❤️

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Thank you for your kind words. These are troubling times and yet they are also times of great possibility. But when people of good heart step forward to name what is loving and what is not there’s a great power to our witness. I so loved visiting your community in February. And the echoes of the many beautiful conversations there continue to be held with appreciation in my heart

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Mar 24Liked by Carrie Newcomer

Hugs and a very gracious thank you, Carrie, for sharing your gifts so eloquently. “…’just when I’m at my most weary’ you ‘surprise and inspire me.’ We can do this hard thing.

❤️🙏❤️

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Thank you for this wise essay, especially for pointing out how boorish mocking the other's imperfections is. I know how hard it is to carry on in schools and early jobs, for a stutterer. Only now, far into the second half of life, I generally find understanding and patience when my speech is not as fluent as expected.

"The news of the world" makes uncouth behaviours sensational. Our responsibility is to spread "the news of the heart", about people who are considerate, attentive and helpful.

Maybe, having read your essay, someone will notice a person in need, and will help them, in a similar way these wonderful travellers helped you.

We cannot overcome evil in any other way than doing and spreading good.

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Thank you for the distinction between new of the world and news of the heart.

I would also say that the heart, maybe just a bit from each of us, transforms the news of the world if only drop by drop. "Drops of water turn the mill" Pete would say.

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The distinction comes from Carrie's song "A Great Wild Mercy"

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Thank you so much for your beautiful post. Yes I loved my grandmother so much, she was an amazing woman and overcame many challenges. She inspires me to this day.. Yes, may we all lean into the news of the heart, and strengthen one another for the journey. Love is still the greatest power. Thanks again for your presence here.

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The day following the day I got kicked out of the Navy, I was hitchhiking to Vermont from Illinois. As darkness fell, I walked up a long interstate exit ramp. There was light coming from a restaurant and I opened the door.

"Oh, I'm sorry. We just closed." A woman around my age (early twenties).

My teeth chattered as I asked if there was any coffee left.

"Oh, no. I just poured out the last pot."

I asked if I could sit inside until she left. I was pretty sure that I would freeze to death in a cold Ohio night.

A minute or two later, my downcast eyes saw her feet in front of me. When I looked up, she handed me a cup of hot chocolate.

"Thank you" I whispered through my heart, which was now in my throat.

"If you don't mind me calling my boyfriend, I'll see if you can spend the night at our apartment with us.

My smile of gratitude was all the answer I could come up with, what with my heart being in my throat and all.

My higher power smiled the next morning as I patiently listened to their pitch about Amway, while I ate the breakfast they so graciously made for me. (Much better than the food I had been eating in the brig for the last couple of months.

They took me back to the highway and I remember their kindness nearly 40 years later.

I pray that they reached the top of their pyramid.

https://jeffastle.substack.com/publish/home

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What a powerful story, my friend. And I, since there is much more that came before, and after the story, and that the kindness, the young woman extended, probably felt miraculous in some way. Thank you for sharing it with us. I believe the impulse to kindness is Our default. But for many reasons that default becomes hampered or thwarted. Remembering every kindness that deeply affected us and change, some thing can be a source of continuing to spread that kindness in the world. Because we personally know the difference it can make.

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Thank you. I have lived a life and I have encountered lots more kindness then aggression. I do my best to repay the universe for all of the gifts bestowed.

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