Balance of Joy and Sorrow


“Some of you say, “Joy is greater than sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.”
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.”
― Kahlil Gibran


Perhaps the perfect time to talk about sadness is when I’m not feeling particularly sad yet feeling attuned to the sadness of others. There does seem to be more than enough to go around. Yet joy and sorrow do have one of those weird conservation of energy relationships. They can’t be created or destroyed but they can be converted one to the other. I do know that the people I have met who feel sorrow the deepest are the ones who seem to have the greatest capacity for joy and vice versa. Yet when feeling joy, how much is sorrow in our minds and when feeling deep sorrow, that 2 Am grey ashes in the soul feeling, joy feels out of the question, something almost unattainable.Oddly enough about the only way to heal another’s sorrow seems to be a willingness to listen and shoulder some of it if only as a witness. By drawing off some of the sorrow, then perhaps joy can slowly reawaken.
Blessings, G


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Eyes of the StormEyes of the Storm by G A Rosenberg


Hounding My DreamsHounding My Dreams by G A Rosenberg


Bearing Witness to the Joy of Another


“Suddenly summoned to witness something great and horrendous, we keep fighting not to reduce it to our own smallness.”
― John Updike


A few weeks back I wrote a bit on bearing witness to the pain of another and how we need to let our loved ones feel their pain at times without trying to fix it. I realized tonight that that is only the half of it.A friend of mine was telling me about the insights he had while on a pilgrimage. He was excited and transformed and I found myself wanting both to ask him questions and perhaps bring him down to earth somewhat. I held back from doing this and let him communicate what he would. Part of me figured that there would be time enough for questions at a later point and part of me was coming to a realization. If we need to experience our own pain and breakage without someone providing a buffer for us don’t we also need to be able to experience joy and healing without interfering. I don’t mean by this that we shouldn’t feel joy when our loved ones are happy, of course we should. I simply mean that the last thing needed at the point of healing or realization or joy is well-intentioned unsolicited advice. It is possible to be present with someone and bear witness to both their joy and sorrow without needing to steer it or help it along. By being present, we can perhaps connect to something within ourselves.
Quite often seeing someone experiencing the extremes of emotion can be frightening. Perhaps we can relate to the times that we have felt intense feelings and fear that loss of control and what it may bring. It is those very extremes that can often give us the most insight into ourselves and the universe and to deny that to ourselves and others is to rob them of this. At times it is better to be a silent wingman than the driver of the car. It is definitely more appreciated.
Blessings, G


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Archway to a Strange LandArchway to a Strange Land by G A Rosenberg


Fiery GoodbyeFiery Goodbye by G A Rosenberg


Joy and Sorrow


“Life is glorious, but life is also wretched. It is both. Appreciating the gloriousness inspires us, encourages us, cheers us up, gives us a bigger perspective, energizes us. We feel connected. But if that’s all that’s happening, we get arrogant and start to look down on others, and there is a sense of making ourselves a big deal and being really serious about it, wanting it to be like that forever. The gloriousness becomes tinged by craving and addiction. On the other hand, wretchedness–life’s painful aspect–softens us up considerably. Knowing pain is a very important ingredient of being there for another person. When you are feeling a lot of grief, you can look right into somebody’s eyes because you feel you haven’t got anything to lose–you’re just there. The wretchedness humbles us and softens us, but if we were only wretched, we would all just go down the tubes. We’d be so depressed, discouraged, and hopeless that we wouldn’t have enough energy to eat an apple. Gloriousness and wretchedness need each other. One inspires us, the other softens us. They go together.”
― Pema Chödrön


Joy gives way to grief which gives way to joy. Even in the hardest life the two seem to balance each other out. That’s not to say that all of our lives are equally hard. I have met very few people living in the roughest situations who didn’t find things to be joyful about. I have also met many living lives of relative ease who find ways of being miserable from time to time. There seems to be a strange balance of relativity there. Tho if we can see them both, our joys and misery as experience and the ability to experience life as joy, what then? Perhaps neither joy nor sorrow (or to use Pema Chödrön’s word wretchedness) need be fixed locations on our map. Perhaps in accepting them as equal spurs on our journey, we can reach new heights of understanding and compassion.
Blessings, G


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Wind Currents Over Shadowed BeachWind Currents Over Shadowed Beach by G A Rosenberg


Echoes of A Black LotusEchoes Of the Black Lotus by G A Rosenberg


Tarot Post – Three of Swords

Three of Swords (Sorrow)


Three of SwordsThree of Swords (Revised) by G A Rosenberg


I didn’t want to know.
Separation hurts like hell
Still Healing Begins



None that came
and took the hand
of sorrow’s separation
Bleeding heart releases tears
Not only bloody down
the cheek of one’s soul
but burning holes
in the fabric of real
exposing chaos


What can come
spring forth from loins
of chaos manifestation
Lovely monsters coming through
not only ravishing
the whole of being
but with ecstatic
terrible beauty
exhorting night
–G A Rosenberg


The suit of swords represents thought, ideas, plans and conflicts. Threes deal with maturity, accomplishment and transmission of the energy involved. Thought separates one thing from another for the purposes of comparing and contrasting, breaking down and analyzing. What is that energy of separation in its maturity but that of sorrow and loss. When we find separation from those we loved and cherished we feel grief. When we find that we can no longer hold on to things we once innocently believed there is grief as well.  Knowledge replaces faith and we grow wiser but sometimes it hurts. In the long run the separation itself is illusion tho. Every relationship (whether it be with beliefs, places or people) still exists and we still learn from it. They have just moved into the past.


Astrological Correspondence – Saturn in Libra- Saturn is the planet of hard lessons and when in Libra, the focus of the lessons is our relationships and partnerships. When our relationships come under scrutiny, then we notice the flaws and what we need to learn from it becomes apparent. This can often result in learning the lesson and moving on or learning the lesson and rebuilding the relationship using what we have learned.


I Ching Correspondence – 33) Tun – Retreat

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The Trigram of the Heavens is over the Trigram of the Mountain  – When you don’t feel like you can interact in a fair way, then there may come a time of retreat or separation from that with which you are engaging. This is necessary in order to preserve your energies and marshall your strength. This does not mean running away as much as retreating from an overwhelming situation.

When the three of swords comes up in a reading, it often means separating from something or someone the querent has loved and the ensuing grief that that provides. Heartache.  It may counsel some time needed to reflect and heal.

When the three of swords comes out reversed in a reading, it may mean a clinging to old hurts and separations and an inability to move on and put them in the past. It can show someone who has not yet accepted the ‘gift’ of insight the separation gives.

Quote of the Day – November 20, 2012

“Sorrow prepares you for joy. It violently sweeps everything out of your house, so that new joy can find space to enter. It shakes the yellow leaves from the bough of your heart, so that fresh, green leaves can grow in their place. It pulls up the rotten roots, so that new roots hidden beneath have room to grow. Whatever sorrow shakes from your heart, far better things will take their place.”
― Rumi

For any one of us does life improve or is it just our understanding and awareness of it that does? As we grow older are we able to handle the sad points easier because we have had more experience and we know that the pendulum always keeps swinging or do we just become resigned. Entropy or cyclic growth, which outlook do we have and which seems more in synch with nature? More quests to go on.
Blessings, G



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Tarot – Knight of Cups by G A Rosenberg


Copper Lightning Mandala by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – October 20 2012

“If I can see pain in your eyes then share with me your tears. If I can see joy in your eyes then share with me your smile.”
― Santosh Kalwar


I have so much to be grateful to the universe for. One of the biggest is that if I sense someone truly in pain around me, I will stop and listen and help if I can. I have worked hard to take as my creed the idea that “shared pain is lessened, shared joy increased”. At times, when friends on FB contact me or call me with problems, I find myself impatient but then quite often I feel the sheer need to connect that is there and I force myself.  I don’t feel this is an ego thing as much as a way I’ve been given to serve and I am thankful for it.  Of course I love the other half of the equation as well. I love to laugh, joke and share humour and it is expanded. It makes me hope that no matter what I share, pain, joy or both that I am authentic when I do so.
Blessings, G


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Manifesting the Seed by G A Rosenberg


Electric Pinwheel by G A Rosenberg