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Tag: IPS (Inner Peace Symptoms)



“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]

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MARY OLIVER: Poetry and Peace

MARY OLIVER: Poetry and Peace

Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom): an understanding that every form of Making is ultimately another way of practicing being human.  [Humans make things.  It’s how we connect with one another and with the World.]

I am pleased when I can wander through poet Mary Oliver’s words and borrow her eyes and her heart to see again the beauty and the mystery of Life-Its-Own-Self.  The words remind me:  I am not alone.

That one helps me get back to peace again amid the hurly-burly bustle and the noisy push-me, pull-you tumble fades away.  AHHH….

My favorite Oliver quote does not come from a poem.  It was part of a rare interview she gave with Rachel Martin on a 2012 National Public Radio’s “Weekend Edition Sunday.

She said, “I said once, and I think this is true, the world did not have to be beautiful to work.  But it is.  What does that mean?”

That, I think, is a worthy big question.  It’s certainly big enough to fuel a life-long work.

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Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom):  a tendency to notice what you are noticing and to ask why you’re noticing it.  [Sometimes you notice things that call to your heart and your heart responds by dancing.  The best move then is to go do more of that dance….]

Have you noticed the latest trend (especially after the pandemic lockdown) toward hugging trees, galaxy-gazing, mooning over wilderness landscapes and generally dissing our man-made constructs and urban follies?

Going-Outside-with-the-capital-O has become the new default mode of operation.  (Mostly ‘cause it’s pretty boring being stuck inside-with-no-capital-I, even with all the latest gadgets and doo-dads.)

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Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom):  a tendency to take action opportunely.  Not tied to past accomplishments, not attached to any outcomes, you’re free to take effective action.  [It’s another water thing, I am thinking.  If you watch a stream, you notice that the water moves the best way it can over, under, around…and gets to the sea eventually just doing that.  Cool.]

I bet you’ve heard it a time or two, the old chestnut about how “timing is everything.”

I bet you’ve noticed that there are times when everything you do is magic.  It all works.  The pieces easily slide into place and the thing you’re doing takes off, dragging you along with it.

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Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom):  a growing appreciation of process.  [Creativity and change move through every situation you encounter.  Enjoy the ride ’cause there ain’t no going back!]

Change is everywhere.  Everything keeps changing, little by little.  Like a tree growing, it just keeps on.

The thing is you don’t really notice how big that tree is getting until you find an old picture and are amazed at the difference in that tree your father planted in the yard all those years ago.

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Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom):  a growing awareness that the only thing that abides is the way you walk.  [How are you walking and how is your walk talking?]

Assorted studies have shown that the way you walk down the street increases your chances of being a victim, a target for challenge, or a welcome addition to a group.

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Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom): an understanding that “creativity” is not a talent; it is a way of operating. [The coolest thing is anybody can do it.]

I guess it’s a cliché now.  One way to enhance your creativity, they tell us, is to keep a journal.  Snuggle up with your thoughts and illuminate your feelings, write down your dreams and hunches, collect quotes from the famous and the notorious.

Spend time in your own head.  Be your own psychotherapist.  Be your own guru.  At the very least, you can be your own pen-pal.

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Another IPS (Inner Peace Symptom):  an understanding that generosity is not a down-payment on love.  [Generosity is spill-over when you’re feeling full.]

I am reading a book, LOVE LET GO:  Radical Generosity for the Real World, by Laura Sumner Truax and Amalya Campbell.  It is a story about an amazing church congregation in Chicago, the LaSalle Street Church, who received a totally unexpected windfall:  a check for $1,530,116.78.

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