“May Light always surround you; Hope kindle and rebound you.
May your Hurts turn to Healing; Your Heart embrace Feeling.
May Wounds become Wisdom; Every Kindness a Prism.
May Laughter infect you; Your Passion resurrect you.
May Goodness inspire your Deepest Desires.
Through all that you Reach For, May your arms Never Tire.”
― D. Simone

Sharing the above poem in my classes on the first day of 2017 set the tone of my intention for the year. During the past weekend's teaching I invited the participants to explore the flow of life. A flow is a complete cycle--beginning, ongoing, and ending. From my observation, to be in the flow is to be in the three life affirming fields. First is the field of gratitude which requires the reflection of our past. "Gratitude reduces a multitude of toxic emotions, ranging from envy and resentment to frustration and regret. Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and they report feeling healthier than other people, according to a 2012 study published in Personality and Individual Differences." To honor the past is to embrace the power of the hindsight. The lessons are learned instead of resented. 

When the past is complete we don't hold on to any grudge or baggage. Gratitude allows us to be an open vessel for the sensation and experience to come and pass on. Second is the field of compassion. When we have a healthy relationship with all the things that we feel and think about, we naturally pass on the compassion. It is a process that requires the clear refection of the present-moment-experience. It connects instead of rejects. Sometime the connection leads to the physical rejection which is an aspect of passing. Not everything is good for our body and mind. Rejecting from a connected heart leads to compassion. Rejecting from a disconnected heart leads to the demise of all. “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive.” -- Dalai Lama

Third is the field of curiosity. The future is the unknown and the unknown is infinite. Curiosity expands and propels us forward. Future oriented people are those who possess insatiable childlike curiosity. It is the "doing" and the beginning phase of flow. This is where creativity and inventiveness thrive. Gratitude and compassion free us to welcome the new possibilities. Gratitude is the "done" or the end phase of the flow. We feel complete when we are grateful. Compassion is the "being" or the ongoing phase of the flow. It constantly feeds as it is digesting us. Compassion without gratitude and curiosity eats us alive. While gratitude nourishes the personal self and compassion nourishes all things, curiosity nurtures our potential self yet to be explored and inspires our next generations to come. Hence, through all that we reach for, our arms never tire. Happy New Year!