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The A to Z Guide to Life – H is for Hope. Monday January 25, 2016

Moods move.
They shift.
They swing.
They undulate.

And if you measure them with Moodscope, you’ll see they flow up and down, and down and up again. They rise and fall like an equally exhilarating yet hazardous trip along an undulating Mountain road. In profile, they look like the edge of a Yale Key... and hope is the key to unlocking that difference between exhilaration and danger.

With all this movement, we each need some stability. This stability is called ‘Hope’ – with a Capital ‘H’. Not the current common understanding of ‘hope’ – that’s just wishful thinking, but rather the original Greek meaning: a sure and certain, positive expectation to do with the future and the unseen.

This kind of hope is an anchor for the soul – the psyche – keeping us connected when all else is tossed by the storm. The metaphor for modern Hope is the gimbal. This is the clever balancing device that keeps your camera’s vision steady when everything else is chaotic and moving. You may have seen one in action on one of the helicopter drones that are currently all the rage.

This ability to stay stable is why I think Hope is essential for Moodscopers.

Hope is only ever future and unseen – who hopes for what they see? Most English speaking people would understand it more as ‘faith’ – but it isn’t. It’s different. ‘Faith’ is ‘now’. ‘Hope’ is ‘then’.

It is not wishy-washy, as in the English “I hope so”. It’s rock steady. So, given this definition, what do you Hope for?

What’s the rock steady vision to do with the future and the unseen that keeps your course straight in the midst of the storm?

Some examples may help our discussion. I ‘know’ that the amazing upbringing my eldest son and daughter-in-law are giving my grand-daughters will set them up for success in life. This is Hope.

What do you Hope for?

I have a sure and certain expectation that passing on my learning to my three sons and their partners will give them an opportunity to learn from my mistakes and my successes, and offer them an accelerated path to future success and joy.

Sound like ‘Legacy’ thinking, doesn’t it?

I Sure Hope So...
[and this keeps me going]

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 5:05am

After we went to press, I experienced a simple example of "Hope".
I'd heard the boiler on for about 2 hours and, from the radiators, knew it to be working. But, when I ran the hot tap in the bathroom, only cold water came out. At this point, I knew "Hope" because the unseen (it was cold, not hot) and the future (it would be hot soon) was a positive certainty in my mind. L'xx

Mr A non Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 6:25am

Lex amazing (as usual) you are such a detailed and articulate writer that you have summed it up completely. Hope is an unknown, unseen,unexplainable belief that everything will turn out right in the end . I'm Hoping it will anyway. Thanks Lex Im going to read your blog again now (Hope i've got enough time before work) Have a good day everyone

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 7:40am

Oh Mr A non, you made me smile... thank you! Hope you have a brilliant day! L'xx

Liz Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 6:50am

Hi Lex. I love the way you write! This particular blog has made me realize I go along (literally and metaphorically) looking at my feet or just a short distance in front of me. As soon as I imagined, through your writing, looking up and ahead, and even into the far distance, I felt better, breathed deeper and felt I had more energy and wanted to move. Great way to start the day! Thank you.

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 7:42am

Liz, you've made me cry - in a good way. So beautifully put: "...looking up and ahead, and even into the far distance, I felt better, breathed deeper and felt I had more energy and wanted to move." Interesting the metaphor of 'lift up your eyes' or 'lift up your head' actually works literally. You're reminded me of such an important point. Bless you for that. L'xx

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 7:46am

...even if my English Grammar is a bit rough this morning!!!

Hopeful One Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 8:08am

Hi Lex - so glad you chose H for Hope. I have no doubt that ,in my case , this has been THE factor that kept me going in my dark days.

I can do no better than to quote the Emily Dickinson poem


Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all.

And sweetest in the gales is heard:
And sore must be the storm
That could not abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I have heard it in the chilliest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in all extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Vive la Hope!

And I HOPE you will choose L for a Laughter for here is yours

Late one night, a preacher was driving on a country road and had a crash. A farmer stopped and asked, "Sir, are you okay?" The preacher said, "Yes, I had the Lord riding with me." The farmer said, "Well, you better let him ride with me, because you're gonna kill him."

LillyPet Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 8:45am

HO what a stunningly beautiful poem. Thanks for bringing us sunshine and laughter all the while! :) Love to all LPxx

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 10:50am

I know preachers like that, Hopeful One... ...and 'thank you!' for the beautiful poem. I've reposted it on Facebook, Hope that's OK? L'xx

LillyPet Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 8:41am

Morning Lex,
Yes, my blog from yesterday fits with your hope theme perfectly! Caroline adds her magic touch with by timing our individual blogs and it's wonderful how as a community we are inspired linked and lifted by each others blogs and comments! :)
I have had that wishy washy idea that it is good to hope, but you have added a basis for having hope based on positive past experiences.
So instead of just keeping my fingers crossed that my scores will become more steady, I HAVE hope that they will, because they have become more so over time. When in a very low place we find it hard to have confidence that it will pass, but it does. The candlelights of hope remain steady and we are adding to them on here all the time.
The sky is bright in London this morning :) Thanks for truly wonderful way to start Monday Lex! :) LP xx

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 10:51am

Oh LillyPet, it warms my heart to know we are aligned and in agreement. L'xx

Anonymous Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 8:48am

Hopeful's poem reminded me of how the birds sing even when the rain seems to be going on forever. (I know Emily Dickenson uses birds metaphorically by the way!). It's rained a lot this Autumn and Winter here in the UK and in the part of France were we spend some of our time. It really cheered me to hear a birdsong during the wettest and dreariest of days. That's what I call Hope.

Anonymous Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 8:49am

The above was Jules, Lex or Jul

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 10:53am

They really do throw themselves into each day, don't they Jules... I think there's a blog in there. I'm sure you love Hardy's "The Darkling Thrush"... L'xx

The Gardener Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 10:07am

Hope really rewarded this morning - my marvellous painter has got the carpet tiles down in time for furniture delivery - which means it does not have to be built in another room and moved. I really stuck my neck out - 'designing' a house to cope with all Mr TG's problems and our mutual anno domini - real challenge, and to keep it a 'home' and not a semi-nursing home (as advocated by social workers). Blackbird singing lustily - hope he does not starting nesting with February to come. Day lily (hemerocallis) out - a July flower. Reverting to yesterday and 'scores'. Saying 'high scores' were good news. I should know the danger of 'highs (though currently mean good news) because in the 60's I was carted into hospital with full ambulance bells ringing. Sent out of Westminster hospital clutching a piece of paper 'manic'. If Moodscope (and PC's) had existed then warning bells would have sounded before getting to the ambulance stage - in fact my score would have gone off the map - the 'bump' as so many of you find when you hit earth is particularly nasty.

The Gardener Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 10:18am

Back to yesterday again and women who make you laugh - agree with those mentioned - but they don't write - Alan Coren and his classic piece on Leonardo da Vinci or the Queen when she had nothing to do are pleasing in every word - his vocabulary and grammar please my intellectual snobbishness. Like the cartoons of Giles and Thelwell - there's always some little thing going on in a corner you have not noticed before. And neither of them are cruel. Also, to tie this to today's message (very loosely) their observations on human nature, and that nothing changes, does give reason to hope.

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 11:22am

Good Morning, Dear Gardener! Must check out Alan Coren. I suspect giggles will ensue, out loud, on the train! L'xx

Rats Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 10:53am

I like to split my hope into manageable chunks; I am easily overwhelmed. So, here are my 10s. In the next 10 days I hope my scores will stay steady and I will continue to have good days. In the next 10 weeks I hope to return to work in some capacity. In the next 10 months I hope to have a new job and have left the workplace which has facilitated my illness. I also hope to come out of all of this stronger and wiser.

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 11:23am

Rats! Magnificent, and, I believe, manageable "Hopes". L'xx

Mary Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 1:25pm

I love that definition of hope, both for theological and practical reasons. Thank you so much.

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 1:34pm

Hoped you would, Mary! L'xx

Tim Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 1:59pm

Yes, the comparison of Faith with Hope is good. So where does Love go? "These three abide, and the greatest [...] is ..."? No surprise that there's a spiritual dimension here: we're more than flesh and blood. That's why there's Moodscope and 'scopers! Taking Lex's excellent point about English-speakers reading Hope as Faith, perhaps Love (in turn) can be understood as a prime example of Hope: a certainty of dependable care, of the prevalence (after all's been said, dug over, and done) of Goodness. Love is that hope for Charity, for "being charitable": in other words Generosity. In attitude more than stock. From the world and from our selves.

Lex Mon, Jan 25th 2016 @ 2:04pm

Great points, Tim. Love definitely shares Hope's vision of and for people, doesn't it? I can remember the patience I had (occasionally) with the children growing up. My love for them overlooked temporary 'glitches' in their behaviour or progress because of my strong Hope in their eventual maturity. Love is my fuel. Faith is my call to corresponding action. Hope is my vision and my anchor. But the greatest of these is... L'xxx

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