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What is your refuge? Monday December 29, 2014

As we go through our life experience we encounter 'storms' of many kinds that cross our lives. These could be related to, or connected with our thoughts, feelings, relationships, events in the past, events in the present and much much more besides. By their nature these 'storms' will be very individual, but it is important to recognize them if we are not to be buffeted and damaged by them. Just like a real storm when we will seek refuge somewhere we need a refuge when we deal with our own 'storms'.

This refuge could be anything really and again by its nature it will be very individual. In creating this refuge it would always help if it did not need anything that impeded easy access to it. Thus any refuge you create is likely to work consistently if it goes in the flow of your life, is not unduly complicated or needs much equipment. As I mentioned in my comment to a previous blog 'It pays to play', one refuge that works for me, among others, is my daily dairy. Here I am able to put down my thoughts, feelings, ambitions, dreams, ideas, things of interest, things that went well or not, things I felt grateful for, things that made me happy. By addressing my 'storms' in this way they often lose their sting.

One refuge we can literally carry within ourselves comes from the practice of meditation. If done consistently and regularly it creates a space in our minds allowing any storm to pass through as we come to recognize the impermanence of things of which our 'storm' is just an example. For me this has been the winner.

Very aptly a couple of months ago I stuck in my diary a picture I came across of a octopus named the Coconut Octopus which has developed an incredible strategy to find its own shelter or refuge from its 'storm'. It uses two halves of a split coconut to make a spherical fortress around itself. It then can pop out an eye and decide if it is safe to venture out.

Our refuge should be a little like that. I have other refuge places too - like listening to music, painting, or going for a walk. This dose of Vitamin N (N for Nature) will often put things in perspective which I may not be able to do when I am in a middle of a 'storm'.

So what is your refuge?

Hopeful One
A fellow Moodscoper.

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Di Murphey Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 12:59am

Oh, my dearest Hopeful One ~
What wonderful thoughts upon which to ponder! As it turns out, one of my major strategies in life to to have multiple refuge strategies ~ where I might go and reflect, pray, meditate, and glory in my blessings, of which I have many.

Your inspiring post brings it full circle and I wonder what else we, collectively, might do to aid each other. It is a warm & altruistic site where I feel deep comfort.

I love your post and it has given me much food for thought. Thank you.
Di Murphey

The Entertrainer Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 5:38am

Dearest Di, you give off more light and sparkles than a Christmas Tree!! xx

The Entertrainer Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 5:44am

Dearest Hopeful One, my refuges are many! Many ports in many places for many storms, but I'd love to share one: ritual. Ritual is my refuge. The commonplace every day tasks and routines are an anchor for me in the storm. When all else is unsteady, certain 'normal' things must stay in place. xx

gaskers Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 6:27am

My refuge is my bike, I love the feeling of freedom when out on the road. The weather doesn't bother me - except strong wind, which I always seem to cycle into on the way out, and on the way back. Never quite worked that one out :). There is something medative about being out there, that I dont gain from meditation at home.

Hopeful One Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 8:08am

I accept that meditation in its pure form is not everyone's cup of tea.

Anonymous Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 8:36am

Meditation, yoga, painting, reading, walking, friendship these things get me through.

Julia Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 8:47am

Dear Hopeful One. It's great to read your blog. My refuge is everyday tasks like sweeping the floor, getting a room looking nice and how I like it. Reading the Times each day grounds me as does walking and cycling. I agree about the wind direction Gaskers!

Anonymous Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 10:31am

Hello Hopeful One, how lovely to see you post! I need more of a refuge and your post made me realise that. Vitamin N (for Nature) is so much more of a benefit that I ever really realised. Where I am has erupted into cold sunshine today so, although I am washed out and low from yesterday, I am definitely building up to getting out into it. I will probably wrap each leg in a duvet, snow jacket on the top half and maybe two pillows as ear warmers but I'll be out there!

Getting out is hard I find but its only me not weather that stops me. Is there anyone who doesn't find nature helps their mood?
Love ratg xx.

Anonymous Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 10:32am

Agree withy Lex about sparkles! Love ratg x.

Hopeful One Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 11:13am

If we had a 'like ' tab next to the comment tab on Moodscope I would press that straight away in reply to your observation. I am pretty sure there are many Mooscopers out there who would like to express themselves in this simple way because they may either not have the time or inclination to pen a full comment. Over to the Moodscope Team.

Hopeful One Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 11:28am

I like your post RATG for it was one of your previous replies that inspired me . The secret of getting out is to be adequately dressed.We all know how important vitamins are for our health. They may not matter but the lack of them certainly does! To get type N does need more effort but once that is done its benefits without doubt extend in many areas other than just the physical. It is no wonder that virtually all the popular anti depression regimes I have read about recommend exercise as one of the mood changers. That it also works as a refuge is a bonus.

Anonymous Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 12:27pm

There is nothing better than hearing you have inspired someone and thanks for telling me, ratg x.

Anonymous Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 12:36pm

p.s. Room calling Les...I wanted to say hello and that I hope you are ok.

Liz Mon, Dec 29th 2014 @ 9:36pm

I was wondering too how Les is. I really like Les's posts.

Anonymous Tue, Dec 30th 2014 @ 9:55am

Like (-_-)

Caroline Ashcroft Tue, Dec 30th 2014 @ 10:58pm

Hi Liz and RATG, just wanted to let you know that Les is OK, but he's still not great after the problems he had in Spain. I'm sure he'll be back writing his wonderful blogs very soon. Carolinex

Anonymous Sun, Jan 11th 2015 @ 11:27am

Hey Hopeful One :-)

I really liked reading your thoughts and especially your phrase "Vitamin-N".
That's a good one and so true!

Greetings from Germany

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