From Darkness Into Light

Last weekend I went to the Advent Service at Salisbury Cathedral.  At the beginning of the service, as the clock struck five, the cathedral was plunged into darkness.  One solitary candle was lit at the West Door and then gradually, to the sound of sublime choral plainsong, hundreds of candles were lit throughout the vast space of the cathedral.  It’s hard to describe just how deeply moving, uplifting and life-affirming the service was. Just before it began, we were invited to think about those who might perhaps be in a dark place in their lives. The service was a comforting … Continue reading

Turn Up the Volume

Like an ability or a muscle, hearing your inner wisdom is strengthened by doing it. Robbie Gass  Some years ago a friend used an intriguing metaphor to describe what was happening to her. She explained that she kept hearing a certain message about what she should do next in her life. Because the message referred to a pretty radical life change — not something she wanted to take on board at the time — she kept trying to ignore it.  She kept ‘turning down the volume’ (as you would on a radio) so that she couldn't hear it any longer.  But, … Continue reading

‘Tis the Season … for Reflection

I know everyone will be busy in the run-up to Christmas, but that space between Christmas and the end of the year can be a great time to take a step back and reflect on the ups and downs of the past year, see what lessons there are to be learned, and to refocus and make some plans for 2012. For those who really want to get their teeth into this, I recommend Jinny Ditzler’s book Your Best Year Yet!, which takes you through the process using ten specific steps. Here are a selection of those steps to get you … Continue reading

What Went Well Today?

This month's tip is written with Thanksgiving in mind. It's a holiday I remember with great affection from my many years living in Southern California. Much has been written about the importance of gratitude: being mindful of, and appreciating, all that we have to be grateful for, even (and perhaps especially) when times are tough or particularly challenging. But in this tip I'm going to focus on the importance of appreciating ourselves and our achievements. Personally, I don't think we do enough of it. And when we do actually stop to consider what we've achieved — in a day, a … Continue reading

From Darkness Into Light

A couple of weeks ago I went to an Advent Procession service in Salisbury Cathedral. The service began in total darkness and then gradually, to the sound of the most sublime choral plainsong, hundreds of candles all around the vast space of the Cathedral were lit and the procession began. It was a deeply moving and uplifting experience. Advent is, of course, all about the coming of the Light.  But we're not far now from the Winter Solstice; that day in the depths of winter that heralds the turning of the earth from winter to spring – from darkness into … Continue reading