This is a post I made on Facebook back in 2014 as I was preparing to launch deeper into the Heart Warrior Project...all of the bits mentioned, Pema, Ron, the quote, all of it remain guides for me on this journey and I wanted to make sure I share them here on the "Journey to the Heart Warrior" blog:
January 28, 2014, 12:45am
I am reading Pema Chodron again. Thanks to Ronald Ben, a friend and Vietnam Veteran who took my Storytelling and Performance Expression class at the VA Rehab Center in White City, Oregon. I introduced Ron to Pema's writing. I was inspired to quote her from her book, When Things Fall Apart. I have used this quote in every class I've led and I feel that I could continue to use it for a long long while:
"Everyday when things get edgy, we are presented with the opportunity to ask ourselves the question; am I going to practice peace? or am I going to war?"
Ron decided to seek out Pema's books for himself, and just gifted me her book, Taking the Leap- Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears. Ron has been consistent encouragement for me on my journey into the Heart Warrior Project, into the Heart Warrior (in myself and each of us). He has called me an emotional advocate for vets. That is what I desire to be, an invitation to reveal and heal the injured parts, the soft and tender parts, to connect us all to the Heart of the Matter, to fortify the circle, that NO ONE feels outside of it!... And so, I am continuing to deepen myself, fortify myself and go forward on this journey with the Heart Warrior Project, with life...and now, I am reading Pema again - thank you Ron for your bravery in opening your heart, healing your heart and thereby contributing to the healing of your family's heart and community's heart and society's heart and world's heart and ultimately, Mama Earth's heart. I believe in the chain reaction of this healing!
And now I am reading Pema again. And this strengthens me in my personal Peace practice - in my "lived practice of non-violence":
Taking the Leap-
Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears, Page 2:
There was a story that was widely circulated the days after the attacks of September 11, 2001, that illustrates our dilemma. A Native American grandfather was speaking to his grandson about violence and cruelty in the world and how it comes about. He said it was a if two wolves were fighting in his heart. One wolf was vengeful and angry, and the other wolf was understanding and kind. The young man asked his grandfather which wolf would win the fight in his heart. And the grandfather answered, "The one that wins will be the one I choose to feed."