“Sanctuary” is a word derived from the Latin, “sanctarium,” which means “a container that keeps a cherished or sacred thing safe.”  The word, as used by the Greco-Romans referred to places of holiness or safety.

Even though the word is often traced only as far as the Greek and Roman empires and their temples, the concept of a place of refuge is universal.  It appears in almost all of the cultural and spiritual traditions from all over the world and has been around for thousands of years.

“City of Refuge” by Intangible Arts via Flickr [CC BY 2.0]
Some say the idea of giving people a space that provides them safety from the persecution of their oppressors or gives them a respite from their troubles is derived from the most basic features of human altruism.  We are, after all, hardwired to help other people during the hard times.

“Displaced populations at Bangui Airport” by EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]
In these post-modern times, we’d probably call it some version of “paying it forward.”

We might provide this space for others in the hope that if, at some point, we are in a bad way there will be someone there to offer us help.  Often, too, the act of providing refuge is an acknowledgement of having received such help when we needed it our own selves.

It occurred to me that if “sanctuary” is a container for the sacred and the cherished, then whatever is put inside a sanctuary is, according to the definition, a sacred, cherished thing.

“Elder Woman in Temple” by Sergio Carbajo via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]


Here are a couple of harsh truths:  The world can be an uncertain and fearsome place.  All humans are fragile and can break.

“Portrait of a Daydream” by Fouquier [CC BY-NC 2.0]
Sometimes the cavalry just ain’t coming and often refuge is hard to find.  The only choices you have then are either to duck and run or turn around and deal with what’s in your face.  (In either case, you might die…but, then again, maybe not.)

And here are another couple of truths that are not so harsh:  All humans are a conduit for the power of the Creative and each one of us helps to build the world in which we live.

“Late night problem solving” by Cambridge University Dept. of Engineering via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]
And, perhaps, in those latter truths there may be a way to get on with doing your own walk through the world.  Maybe there is a way to be a sanctuary for your own precious and sacred self.

Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom):  an understanding that you can make a sanctuary for yourself that endures.  [The price for that is developing yourself into a person you can trust to meet whatever comes at you the best way you can.]


Yeah, yeah, I know.  It sounds like that other ubiquitous bit of advice that’s slung around willy-nilly about how you’ve got to love yourself before you can love anybody else.

That’s sort of a truth.  The real is that even though you don’t love yourself very much, it’s likely that you’ll know something about how to connect with other people around you and maybe you’ll love them dearly even if you can’t show it very well.

Saints and other blessed sorts do it all the time.  So do lots of ordinary folks and those who habitually tweet or spend half their time on Facebook doing silly selfies and food snapshots.

“Facebook Icons” by Kuningmas Auto Care via Flickr [CC BY-SA]
(It’s another human thing.  We very often do the best we can with what we’ve got.)

Most of us, though, have not been taught how to love ourselves. Often we’ve even been discouraged from doing so.  (It is more than possible that we’ve never even been introduced to our own selves and we don’t even know where to start.)

This 2020 YouTube Video, “Why You Need to Stop Trying to Be Loved But Love Yourself Instead,” was published by English author, nutritionist, hypnotherapist trainer and motivational speaker Marisa Peer to introduce her book, “I AM ENOUGH:  Mark Your Mirror and Change Your Life.

Peer is the creator of “Rapid Transformational Therapy,” which she developed over her thirty years of working as a life coach and advisor for “royalty, rock stars, actors, professional and Olympic athletes, CEOs and media personalities,” it says here.  I’ve included it in this post because it does give you a good place to start on building your own trust in yourself and appreciating your own self-worth.

Peer does a really good job of delineating the advantages and benefits of embodying the idea that you are “enough.”

If you know that you are actually “enough” and if you can consistently work on learning how to deal with the world on your own terms, then it’s much more likely that you’ll be able to make yourself into that person you know you can trust.

You’ll probably be better able to accept whatever help you might receive along the way as well.


Trust is all about knowing that somebody’s got your back.  It is earned, that trust.  A trustworthy person will consistently act in a certain way that works for you.

You can’t trust someone you don’t know or someone who you have not seen being tested by challenging circumstances.

“Trust” by Lex McKee via Flickr [CC BY-NC 2.0]
It stands to reason, then, that you will probably not trust yourself if you don’t know how or why you stand and move as you do or if you’ve never allowed yourself to face and resolve trying situations.

If you get blindsided by your own shadows and demons every time you step out and try something new or different, it is unlikely you’ll even WANT to step outside your own comfort zone.  And if you never do anything new or different, that comfort zone is going to be mighty small.

“Courtney tackles her fears and tries the bridge!” by Kate Webster [CC BY-ND 2.0]
How are you going to dream a dream and make the moves to go get it if that dream is different than what you already know?

Trusting yourself is actually a prerequisite for being a person who knows what they really want.  Trusting yourself also means giving yourself permission (and the desire to develop the ability) to go towards the dream you want even if nobody else believes in it.

Every day is a big adventure for my little boy. Gotta remember to live more like he does each day….” By Hyunwoo Sun via Flickr [CC BY-NC 2.0]
You’re going to need all that when you go for your dream, you know.


This 2018 YouTube video, “You Are Who You Are Looking For” features motivational speaker and spoken word poet Adam Roa.  It was uploaded by Goalcast.

You can learn more about Roa’s work by clicking the button below.

click-hereHere’s a poem:


There are tiger eyes in the mirror

Staring back at me,

Calm, alert to all around them,

Wells of warm placidity.


There are tiger eyes in the mirror

And I just have to smile.

They tell me now I’m strong enough

To deal with this world’s guile.


There are tiger eyes in the mirror,

Loving and serene.

Trusting the beast once hated

Seems to be transforming me.

Created by Netta Kanoho

Header photo credit:  “Sunrise: Life at 10,000 feet” by Mattie B via Flickr [CC BY-SA 2.0]



(Click on each of the post titles below and see where it takes you…)


Thanks for your visit.  I’d appreciate it if you would drop a note or comment below and tell me your thoughts.


12 thoughts on “BE YOUR OWN SANCTUARY (Another IPS)

  1. Rebekah Kann says:

    What a great site! Where did you get the photos from? 

    I think everyone needs to read this post.  It’s that good because so much stress is not good and I just wrote a post on my website about the best Stress-free teas to try out.  (You could check that on my site too.) 

    I wonder how you write this kind stuff too, it can’t be easy to know what to write. 

    1. Thanks for the visit, Rebekah, and for your interest in how I put it together.

      I get many of my images from the Flickr platform where many of the photographers upload their work under the Creative Commons license.  They are willing to share their pictures with bloggers and other folks on the internet as long as they receive credit for the work.  

      Many of the images are very different from the things available on other platforms that feature images because the people who share them are also photographers who are learning or developing new directions for their craft.  Organizations also post pictures they want the public to share.  

      (I always notify the photographers that I used their work in my post and I send them a link to the post so they can check it out and make sure that I’m not abusing their generosity.)

      Many of the Wikipedia/Wikimedia photos also are under the Creative Commons license or else they use things that are in the Public Domain and can be shared freely.

      I like to feature the works of other people in my post — both the images and the videos — because it makes the posts more of a collaborative effort and, for real, I like being able to share the wonderfully creative work many of these Makers are doing.

      I get my ideas for what I write about from Life, I guess.  I’ve spent a lifetime looking at it and trying to figure out what the heck we are all doing here and thought some on how I can do my own walk more effectively.  It’s a lot of fun.  (“Cheap thrills,” as a friend of mine always used to say.). Hee!

      Please come again.

  2. NicoleSpirals says:

    “All humans are a conduit for the power of the Creative and each one of us helps to build the world in which we live.”

    YES. This is at the core of my purpose in life. Surrender to Source or the “Creative” is a powerful process of helping you to get out of your own way and let the creative force within you take control. There is so much wisdom and flow in the Higher Self. 

    It’s becoming more clear to me every day that I want to help others understand themselves and their patterns so that they can heal and integrate all the fragmented pieces of themselves. Then they will better see how they can give the world their true gifts. This is what makes the world a better place. Beautiful article!

    1. Nicole, thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I am so glad the post resonated with you.

      Please do come again.

  3. A personal attitude can sometimes be hard to manage given all the craziness that happens in the world these days. Even if you shut off the news, the reality of tough times can be a challenge for most everyone.  The good news is that we can choose to control our attitudes, even if it can take conscious practice to get it right.

    Thanks for the nice reminders (and food for thought) about being your own sanctuary. 

    1. I do agree, Aly.  Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.

      Please do come again.

  4. Parameter says:

    Let me abuse your mind – I am a sanctuary.

    I agree with you that a sanctuary is a place we keep sacred things. Man naturally trust divinity, so he trusts and guaranties his safety in his sanctuary. But a lot of the so-called sanctuary is the hand works of man himself.

    Then if you ask me, the best place to find safety is right from your inside. That is the only way you can constantly turn and deal with what is in your face like you said

    1. Parameter, you make me smile.  Thank you.

      Many people do forget that they carry a piece of the Divinity inside themselves.  

      Please do come again.

  5. Bob Roman says:

    Hey folks,

    I stumbled upon this article on “be your own sanctuary” and I have to say, it really resonated with me. As someone who has struggled with self-care and finding inner peace, this idea of being my own safe haven is so important.

    I’ve tried various methods to calm my mind and reduce stress, but I often find myself relying on external sources for comfort. But, as the article points out, true comfort and peace come from within.

    I’m curious, have any of you had similar experiences with trying to find peace and comfort in external sources? How have you worked towards being your own sanctuary?

    I also love the idea of creating a routine or ritual to prioritize self-care. For me, a morning chi-kung practice and 8 km walk have really helped set a positive tone for the day.

    Overall, I think this article offers great insights and practical tips for incorporating self-care into our daily lives. It’s a reminder that taking care of ourselves should be a top priority, and by doing so, we can create a sense of peace and security within ourselves.

    What are your thoughts on this topic? Let’s chat!

    1. Bob, I am so glad the post resonated with you.  I am confused, though.  I’m just one person, not a pile of them. 

      My blog grew out of a determined habit of mine that I’ve cultivated over a lifetime to follow poet Rainier Maria Rilke’s “advice to a young poet.”  He said:  “Live the questions now.  Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answers.”

      It’s been a grand trip, living my questions.  I am finding that I do love the answers I am living now.

      Hope you will find the same success your own self.

      Please do come again.

  6. Anastazja says:

    This post has helped me have some mindful time this morning. 

    I do trust myself now that I am older.  I guess that is because I know myself through so many circumstances of life.  I agree.  The need to help… hold out a hand… is fundamental because we know that, at some point, we will need that hand. 

    This article was a great way to start today.  I think I should read it or one like it every morning along with scripture.  By the way, the images were very thought provoking.

    1. Anastazja, thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I am so pleased the post connected with you.

      Please do come again.

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