Mocha Angels 365. Day 37.

“Our personal attempts to live humanely in this world are never wasted. Choosing to cultivate love rather than anger just might be what it takes to save the planet from extinction.”

– Pema Chodron, The Places That Scare You

I’m reading this book right now, and it is a stellar work. Chodron, an American Buddhist nun, most known for her bestseller When Things Fall Apart, gives clear instruction on how to open the heart (and keep it open) especially when we don’t want to do so. A review is coming soon. If you’ve read the book, or any of her books, let me know what you think.

Mocha Angels 365. Day 27.

Hope is the last thing to die. When all hope is gone, that’s when people check out of life.

Hope is the emotion that keeps us hanging on even when we are bone tired. When the money is gone, there’s no food in the house, addiction has us in it’s grip, grief has us crying every night, children are sick, collection notices are in the mailbox, or layoffs just occurred, we continue to have hope. Without hope, we wouldn’t take a chance on love, bear children, or continue to live. Hope is the belief that life will get better and improve.

Hope is a sister to faith which is the evidence of things unseen. Faith is a cousin to compassion which is seeing the God in the other person. Love is the parent of all three. If your hope is fading, contact someone you love, or who you know loves you. Trust and believe love will lead you back.

Mocha Angels 365. Day 326.

I’ve been listening to an audio book called Being Love- Teachings to Cultivate Awareness and Intimacy by Zen Buddhist Master Thich Nhat Hanh. The audio is about an hour and twelve minutes long. Around the fifty-five minute mark, he talks about self-love.

Hanh says ( I’m paraphrasing and cutting it down a bit), “May I learn to look at myself with the eyes of understanding and love. Many people cannot accept themselves. They are at war with themselves. If we look deeply inside ourselves, we find out the conditions that made ourselves. And then we accept ourselves with our suffering and our happiness at the same time.”

He follows with talking about our relationships with other people, not just intimate relationships: “And we know that to love is to accept ourselves as we are…to accept the other person as she is…as he is…and looking deeply to see how that person was made.”

Hanh shows us how to cultivate the four basic qualities of authentic love: Maitri (lovingkindness), Karuna (compassion), Mudita (joy), and Upeksha (freedom). It’s a very grounded approach to love. It teaches how to sincerely listen to others and love them in a way that is freeing for both people. Being Love is a beautiful book. I’ll be listening to it over and over again.

10 out of 10 Mocha Angels.

Click to listen.