Refuge. A shelter. A safe space. Someone seeking shelter; a refugee. I have been thinking of this a lot lately. In Annapolis, I have had the privilege of facilitating a group of women who come together each month to sit and contemplate these mysteries. We gather to feel compassion again and to reset our hearts to loving-kindness. We have been seeking shelter in each other from the onslaught of information that is frightening, overwhelming, and threatening. We, too, are like refugees, trying to find a home that is not threatened and that is safe. This is what spiritual practice is about – the constant return and abidance in the Heart, the shelter, the only safe space here in the world.
I think a lot about love as I consider this word, refuge, and as I write this blog. Sitting here, my own breath shifts and there is a release. I gratefully consider the refuge I have found in the teachings of compassion, and wisdom, and in forgiveness and kindness. I gratefully acknowledge the Teachers of all traditions who have helped us find this comfort. And, I acknowledge gratefully, each of you who gather in this moment, with me and with others who are here to love. My breath is my refuge in this moment.
Deep, calm, breathing.
Deep, calm, quiet.
A refuge -Here -in my breath.
Let’s take refuge for a moment.
There is always a safe place, teach all the Masters, and it is always in your heart. Go there and rest for a moment. Find your community, and sit with them, and bring refuge to each other. Contemplate this for all beings, without exception – that is our refuge.
May all beings, without exception, be happy and have the causes of happiness.
May they be free from suffering, and the causes of suffering.
May they never be separated from the happiness which is free from sorrow.
May they rest in equanimity, free from attachment and aversion.