Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Choosing My Thoughts

Being away from the blogging world while I was travelling the past 6 weeks gave me an opportunity to pick up and read several books.

I forgot how "delicious" books can be and how much I enjoyed devouring them!

I read about destiny and choosing our thoughts. Fascinating subjects.

Destiny is like a relationship - a play between divine grace and willful self-effort. Half of it we have no control over; half of it is absolutely in our hands and our actions will show measurable consequence.

We gallop through our lives like circus performers balancing on two speeding side-by-side horses - one foot is on the horse called "fate" and the other on the horse called "free will". And the question we have to ask every day is - which horse is which? Which horse do I need to stop worrying about because it's not under my control, and which do I need to steer with concentrated effort?

I feel there is so much about my fate I cannot control, but other things do fall under my jurisdiction. I can decide how to spend my time, whom I interact with, whom I share my body, life, money and energy with. I can select what I eat, read and study.

I can choose how I'm going to regard unfortunate circumstances in my life - whether I see them as curses or opportunities (and on the occasions when I can't rise to the most optimistic viewpoint, because I'm feeling too damn sorry for myself, I can choose to keep trying to change my outlook).

I can choose my words and the tone of voice in which I speak to others. And most of all I can choose my thoughts.

I am learning how to select my thoughts just the same way I select what clothes I'm gonna wear each day. Because if I can't learn to master my thinking, I will be in deep trouble!

So this is my mission and it will never end.

"All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking"
~~ Friedrich Nietzsche 1844-1900

Photo taken in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, August 2010. We got up early to see the sunrise and then the fog descended upon us. I am hoping my thoughts will not be devoured by fog.


Aurora said...

Welcome back, dear Peggy!

Books are a delightful way to relax and unwind. Glad you took advantage of that during your travels.

You are so correct. Those choices, that act of choosing, shapes everything for our lives. It is our power base as we respond and cooperate with life, deciding if we can find an opportunity for growth and healing and peace in each event -- or if we are still committed to being stuck about it, thinking someone or something outside of us can make us happy.

A very interesting thing, that between fate and choice...

If all we have is time and attitude, then it is OURS to appreciate, given the choice between the positive and negative.

Choices are empowering.


Who you callin' housewife? said...

I only believe in free will, not fate. Fate is when free will is not used, when people are oppressed at the threat of death.

No, one person cannot change everything around them, but each personal can be a small force of change.

I keep thinking about the "fate" of those who live in the middle east. Those who live under massive religious oppression. The women who are stoned for implementing free will (and often stoned for doing nothing).

Free will is for those who are free and for those trying to be free. Fate is for those who can do nothing or refuse to do nothing.

Did you read any books that you would highly recommend? I'm always looking for new ones.

T's Daily Treasures said...

Your posts are always so thought provoking. Hope you had a wonderful 6 weeks. We were in the States for that same amount of time. Travelled nearly 5,000 miles or mile by car. We were so glad to get back home (even if that means Kuwait right now). I usually only find time to read during the summer. Haven't read since getting back here. So many books on my bedside table. Wishing you a wonderful Wednesday. :) Tammy

Cameron said...

I was wondering where you were.....Hope you had a lovely time here in the States!

Those are powerful words, Peggy...thought provoking, but then...that was the whole provoke thought, then choose the ones that will bring the results we desire :)

Thanks...glad to have you back in Blogland!

HappyOrganist said...

Oh you're back! I missed you!!!
if you send me your address I'll include you in the pile of cards I send out to everyone (well not everyone, and it is not a huge pile) - but still.. Two to Australia could be fun.
I'm glad you're back.

Mike Smith said...

Welcomer back Peggy - it's not been the same without you!

McMGrad89 said...

You are blogging! LOL

And such a deep one. I just spent my day with 9 year olds, some with the thinking ability of 4 year olds, so I might drown in the deep end after reading that.

Good luck with your thinking. I am sure you will stay out of the fog, but if you do, I'll sound the the foghorn.


Roban said...

My classroom fills up with "Peggy Music" as I write this....

Free will and fate.... I am more about free will and choices. I know fate has a hand in our lives, but we do have to take the reins at times, especially if we see a path we want to take that might not come our way otherwise.

Thanks for making me think.... After a day with my students, I'm not sure I can read and comprehend without some type of translator.


Anonymous said...

Thought-provoking post as always. But here's a 'thought': let go of thoughts - and what is left is you.

Yeah I'm reading Tolle - it shows! ;o)

Glad you are blogging again!

Jennifer said...

Welcome back! I was wondering what you were up to. Traveling for 6 weeks sounds pretty amazing. I love the photo of the fog. It makes me think of the year of sleep deprivation that I had with my son Isaiah. It feels good coming out of the fog.
I definitely believe some things are fate but it's such an interesting and deep topic to think about self-determination and fate.

I agree that we can control our thoughts but it's such so darn difficult. I like what Stoneweaver said, "let go of the thoughts and what is left is you." Whenever I read Tolle, things seems to make so much sense and life flows but after a while I slip back into my old patterns and need to read again.
Glad you're back!
With Love

Chapter Forty said...

I am so glad you are back.

This is a very thought provoking post and has made me ask myself what do I believe. I like your image of balancing on the two horses fate and free will. I think before I had children I would have totally seen life like that too. Now though, I feel much more like the master of my own destiny (and my kids lives). Wrongly or rightly all these choices we have to make, make me feel so damn powerful, this is s daily dilemma for me as I influence how my children think and behave.

I could believe fate plays a bigger hand in life, but that might be an excuse to not face the responsibility of children. Or maybe I am a control freak? I do know that my internal voice, or my thoughts, I have chosen to be kind and gentle, I never beat myself up, and I certainly chose to always look forward.

Great post Peggy.

Christine said...

Welcome back Peggy, we missed you

TheChicGeek said...

Hi Peggy :)
I love this post so much. So many say things that happen are just our fate, our destiny....but, we do have control, I believe to steer our lives in the direction we wish and create positive outcomes for ourselves.
Brilliant words, "We gallop through our lives like circus performers balancing on two speeding side-by-side horses - one foot is on the horse called "fate" and the other on the horse called "free will". And the question we have to ask every day is - which horse is which? Which horse do I need to stop worrying about because it's not under my control, and which do I need to steer with concentrated effort?" This makes me think, and think and think, and in a really good way!
Thank you for that!
I send you My Love, Peggy :)
I miss much. Life is hard for me lately and blogging has taken a back seat.
Oh, and books, they are our magic carpet through our imagination.
Love You!

miruspeg said...

My goodness what a lovely response to this post!! Being away so long I thought I might have lost contact with my amazing blog friends. Thanks a million for sharing your thoughts.

So many of you have given me further food for thought which is so much appreciate and what I was hoping would happen.

I feel so blessed to have such wonderful friends and will visit you ALL over at your blogs. (I am limiting the time I spend on the computer so please be patient).

Take care and please always remember how special you are and how much you are loved.


Marja said...

Oh lovely What a very interesting books you have read. My dream is a hous with a porch, a comfy chair, a glas of wine and a pile of good books and you won't see me again.
But anyway Faith and free wil. I think when they are aligned exhiting things happen

zhen said...

great post Pegs! Both ideas have been on my brain, coincidentally...also, really like the pic! Good to have you back :)

Macs X

Marit said...

I wish you have a clear blue sky today!! Thanks for this lovely post, you gave me quite something to think about on a moment I could use it. I think that's why I visited you today? Strange vibes in the air? Anyway, thanks and enjoy your weekend/week (don't know the time at your place right now...)

Smita Tewari said...

I agree with u- books are our best comanions!
But where were you travelling?
missed you.
And we have no control over fate- we are like puppets in the hands of destiny!

FoxyMoron said...

Someone on telly today said (oh okay it was Oprah, I confess) "we are not our thoughts".
Great post!

miruspeg said...

Thank you dear friends for visiting and leaving your footprints on my blog.....and sharing your views.

"Live well, Laugh much, Love often"

Peggy xxxx

Marja said...

Thanks for your care dear. We were so happy today to get power and water back in the afternoon. What a treasure this is. We are all safe and sound and that's whats count Arohanui marja

Debra W said...

My dear Peggy,

Once again your words move me to a place of introspection. How important the words that we choose are, yet so many are just taken for granted. As I embark on the Jewish New Year, I will carry your words with me as I work on becoming a better human being.

Thank you for always sharing so much wisdom. You are an angel in my life.


Evil Shannanigans said...

Sorry I haven't been by my friend, computer troubles.
Love the photo! And I believe we control our fate and that opportunities come our way and the outcome depends on whether we take advantage of those opportunities.
I am grabbing life by the horns as I turn the big 3-0 this year. I'm going to 'rassel thos opportunities to the ground!

miruspeg said...

Marja - So happy to hear you are all safe and sound after the earthquake in Christchurch. I will keep sending my love and light to help rebuilt your wonderful city.

Debbie - Your comments always warm my heart and soul.
I wish you a peaceful, happy Rosh Hashanah and may all your thoughts be pure and loving for then you will always be at peace with the world and its people.

Shannon - Great to hear you are grabbing life by the horns, you won't regret it my dear friend!
I intend to do the same by believing in my dreams and making them a reality.
"Here's looking at you kid"!

Anonymous said...

what an inspirational blog to start my Sunday morning off with! Thanks Peggy!

Mommy2Twinkies-Deb said...

Hi Peg,

Boy, you are always so inspirational! I hope you had a wonderful trip. It seems that you have read some great books. I will say though that my best thoughts come while running or practicing yoga!


miruspeg said...

Kerry and Debbie thank you for taking the time to read my blog and I am pleased my words inspired you. I feel the same way when I read your blogs!