dreaming in the shadows of the Sleeping Maiden

Mt. Tamalpais, December 19, 2012

Mt. Tam glimpsed from the path along Corte Madera Creek, Greenbrae

It was a gorgeous afternoon by the Corte Madera Creek. A lot of people of all ages, and ambulatory abilities, and many more dogs, were all out there trying to soak up the brilliant sunshine that came to us today seemingly unfiltered and with such grace and gentleness, even as the temperature wielded a cutting edge in the shadier spots.

On a day like this, during winter’s miserly ways with light, and in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy that left so many of us numb and wordless, the sight of the same people on the sunlit path, the same mischievous dogs nipping at ankles, and some of the same walkers still oblivious to all around them as they talk and text on their phones, was more than a welcome sight for me. I felt as if I wanted to hug each and everyone of them and thank them for their presence.

As I walked and said hello to the many people I now know from sight, but still not by name, I thought about the small changes my friends and I are trying to make so that we can move not just ourselves from this place of helplessness, but perhaps nudge the tide of darkness so that love and light can get through, even if only one trickling good deed at a time for now.

Sally Kuhlman of Sally Around the Bay wrote about “paying it forward 27+ times,” because, as she points out, sharing one’s opinion is not necessarily a way to improve the situation.  Tamara Holland, another Marin blogger and artist, and post-conviction death penalty lawyer, wrote a post in which she questions the notion of divine underpinning in human affairs and urges for more love and collaboration as the truly human, and “grownup” way, to move forward and make the world a better place.

Indeed, personal opinions or speculations about divine purposes may make us feel better temporarily, but, by themselves, they do not make for a better world. So I urge you to follow whatever plan you can make to pay it forward, to exercise kindness in whatever way you can.  Check out the hashtags #20acts, #26acts, #27acts on Twitter to see how others are bringing acts of kindness to brighten to world again.