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  • Writer's pictureJacqueline Stilling

Incite Joy


Put your hands on your heart. Take a deep breath. How are you? Really?

I'm sitting in Grasonville, MD close to where I took the picture below this morning. I'm writing from a locally owned café called Yo Java Bowl waiting to officiate a wedding this evening.

Last night was the joy-filled rehearsal dinner and this morning I was honored to facilitate a Grounding Meditation Session with the bridal party.

There has been a lot of joy . . . and guilt.

I mean experiencing joy while the world is burning is most definitely Both/And.

And yet, life does go on.

Thank the Universe for Ross Gay and his book: Inciting Joy. It is most definitely a treatise on Both/And.

In the first chapter, he discusses getting slammed for writing a book in 2022 about joy when the world contains so much suffering.

He suggests (more eloquently than I will here, so go and read the book) that joy and pain are not separate. He notes:

"What if joy and pain are fundamentally tangled up with one another? Or even more to the point, what if joy in not only entangled with pain, or suffering, or sorrow, but is also what emerges from how we care for each other through those things?"

I remember being at a funeral and during the service seeing a long lost friend. In my immense grief, came joy. This is only one example of thousands I've experienced. And most come from caring for others through pain or them caring for me through pain.

It's a really deep, profound, difficult to explain feeling.

So today, I am going to get dressed up. Go to a beautiful resort on the water. I am going to be able to read remarks I have spent a great deal of effort on, and witness the love of 2 humans taking vows in front of people who will support them as their love waxes and wanes.

I'm going to ask guilt to step aside.

I'm also going to check on people I know are being affected by the world burning.

I will share my joy and hold their fear and sorrow - all in the same moment.

I am sending you so much joy and peace right now.

Hugs.

Peace.





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