Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Several days ago I saw some writing on a wall, and it said this:  
Life is About Finding Yourself

Someone had put an X through the word Finding and below had written another sentence that said this: 
Life is About Creating Yourself 

Well, I am not one who is given to graffiti, but I was tempted to put an X through the word Creating and add another sentence below:   Life is About Being Yourself

  art by rassouli
with permission

Saturday, October 23, 2010

there is so much grace in waiting

I am very happy to say that in the spring of 2012, Spirit First will be hosting a weekend retreat led by Macrina Wiederkehr. She is known as Benedictine sister, author (several books), spiritual guide, seeker of Truth, and lover of the spiritual journey. Today I would like to share some of her words...

There is so much grace in waiting

If possible
open your eyes
without assistance
from an alarm clock.
If possible
smile softly
while getting out of bed.

You have survived the night.
Draw back the curtain
to the yet black night
outside your window.
Stand by the window
and wait for dawn,
then, morning.
 There is so much grace
in waiting.

If your eyes are sleepy,
pretend they are two planets
in the galaxy of your being
and they are responsible
for keeping the day lit.
Go forth, kindler of the day
Fill the world with light.
Your mission is sacramental.
~Macrina Wiederkehr

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Moments of the Soul

Things have been pretty quiet here on this site (I'm sorry about that...), but behind the scenes Spirit First has been quite busy. Last year's poetry contest, our first, brought a wonderful outpouring of gifts of the spirit, and from the many beautiful poems we received, we have created our first poetry book on the themes of meditation and mindfulness, silence and stillness. We are pleased to announce our soon-to-be-released book called Moments of the Soul.

I could not have imagined a more beautiful work than the creation of this book...many of the poems still bring me to tears every time I read them. I hope that among the many poetry gifts in the book, you will discover one or two favorites as well.

The picture on the front cover of the book was taken by fine-art photographer Marc Goldring (Marc is also an advisory board member for Spirit First). You can see more of his work at http://www.marcoclicks.com/. The back cover lists the names of all the poets whose works are presented inside.

At the moment we are in pre-press and expect full publication within a couple of weeks. Once we go to press, our book will be available for sale on Amazon.com.

In the meantime, here is a preview of the cover of our new book (click on the image for a better view).

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Faith is a state of openness or trust. To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float. And the attitude of faith is the very opposite of clinging to belief, of holding on. In other words, a person who is fanatic in matters of religion, and clings to certain ideas about the nature of God and the universe, becomes a person who has no faith at all. Instead they are holding tight. But the attitude of faith is to let go, and become open to truth, whatever it might turn out to be. 
~ Alan Watts

photography by Madalina Diacanu

Friday, October 01, 2010

2011 Spirit First Meditation Poetry Contest

Spirit First is pleased to announce its second annual meditation poetry contest. Poetry submissions may be of any length and any style but must have a theme of meditation, mindfulness, silence, stillness, or solitude. Poems may reflect any discipline, any faith, or none. Poems must be previously unpublished. There is no cost to enter this contest.

Deadline to Enter: January 31, 2011

First Prize: $175
Second Prize: $125
Third Prize: $75
Special Category - Spoken Poem Prize: $75

Please do not enter more than three submissions. Sending more than three poems will lead to those poems being disqualified.

Please submit your poems by email unless you do not have access to the Internet. Poems will be accepted by U.S. Postal Service for those who do not have Internet access. All others are requested to be emailed. Poems sent by U.S. Postal Service will not be returned. Poems should be submitted with a cover note listing the author's name, address, telephone number, and email address. There is no cost to enter this contest. Submissions must be received no later than January 31, 2011.

Winners will be announced no later than March 31, 2011, on the Spirit First website: www.spiritfirst.org. Winning poems will be published on the Spirit First website and the Spirit First blog, and in the Spirit First newsletter (authors retain full rights to their poems). Selected poems may be invited to participate in an upcoming book publication (authors will retain full rights to their poems).

How to submit:

By email: Meditate@SpiritFirst.org

By U.S. Postal Service (for those without Internet access):

          Spirit First Poetry Contest
          PO Box 8076
          Langley Park, MD 20787

We look forward to reading your poems!