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Simple Gifts

To feel at home in my own skin… To feel at home on the face of the earth…

I sometimes think that those are the two deepest yearnings in our lives. What I know for sure is that life becomes very painful when I don’t feel at home with who I am, or with the rich diversity of beings with whom I share this planet.

When I’m feeling out of whack with myself and/or with others, I often turn to this much-loved Mary Oliver poem, with deep gratitude for the way she reminds me of life’s simple but astonishing gifts. Whoever we are, and however we are, each of us has a place of welcome and honor “in the family of things”…

Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.

(Excerpted from Wild Geese: Selected Poems. Read the full poem here.)

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