Published author, leadership and organizational development mentor, inspirational speaker, advocate for cold noses as healers Architecting a social movement of unconditional listening one voice, one story at a time
Dear Hope Has a Cold Nose readers,
Once upon no time there was a Little Soul who said…” I know who I am!” …And the Little Soul shouted, “I’m the Light!”
But soon, knowing who it was not enough. The Little Soul felt stirrings inside, and now wanted to be who it was.
… “being the Light is being special, and being special has a lot of parts to it. It is special to be kind. It is special to be gentle. It is special to be creative. It is special to be patient…Can you think of any other ways it is special to be?” The Little Soul sat quietly for a moment. “I can think of lots of ways to be special!” the Little Soul then exclaimed. “It is special to be helpful. It is special to be sharing. It is special to be friendly. It is special to be considerate of others!” …That’s what is means to be the Light.”
“I know what I want to be, I know what I want to be!” the Little Soul announced with great excitement. “I want to be the part of special called ‘forgiving’
…just then a Friendly Soul stepped forward from the crowd. “Not to worry, Little Soul,” the Friendly Soul said, “I will help you.” …the Little Soul brightened. “But what can you do?” “Why, I can give you someone to forgive!” “You can?” “Certainly!” chirped the Friendly Soul. “I can come into your next lifetime and do something for you to forgive.”
“But why? Why would you do that?” the Little Soul asked…What could cause you to want to slow down your vibration to such a speed that your bright Light would become dark and dense? What could cause you—who are so light that you dance upon the stars and move throughout the Kingdom with the speed of your thought—to come into my life and make yourself so heavy that you could do this bad thing?” “Simple,” the Friendly Soul said. “I would do it because I love you.”
“And so,” the Friendly Soul explained a little further, “I will come into your next lifetime and be the ‘bad one’ this time. I will do something really terrible, and then you can experience yourself as the One Who Forgives.”
Then the Friendly Soul seemed to turn serious, and said in a quiet voice… I have but one favor to ask of you in return.”
“In the moment that I strike you and smite you,” the Friendly Soul replied, “in the moment that I do the worst to you that you could possible imagine—in that very moment… The Friendly Soul became quieter still. “Remember Who I Really Am.” – Neale Donald Walsch, from The Little Soul and the Sun
On New Year’s Eve I wrote about that inner whisper that urged me to write a post the last day of 2020. Once again, that inner whisper nudged not to wait for the end of January. Perhaps it is because I am wondering what each of the co-authors would wisely share with me if I was writing the continuation of their stories since they and I last co-created what you now read in Hope Has a Cold Nose. I wonder what they would say about the continued evolution the United States is going through.
Or perhaps that inner whisper is nudging me to write because in that dance of grace between opposites each of us are experiencing daily, if not hourly or moment by moment, my heart feels called to hold tightly to the preserver of hope that it may counter the hopelessness I perceive many others feel is floating in the waters around them right now.
Or maybe it is a simple as I feel joy in writing when that whisper nudges, for I have come to know that if I listen there will be at least one sentence in what I have written that touches and inspires one person’s heart at the “right time”. And that brings me the greatest joy if I can inspire someone else who may be in need of
A couple of days ago Kutana and I were sharing one of our near daily experiences in which she sits beside me, reaches out at least one of her paws in her cat impersonation gesture, and proceeds to pull – very strongly at that – my arm or my hand to her. Sometimes I get her endearment of love gesture, too, as she manages to pull one of my fingers into her mouth to nibble it very softly. Now this is where you might question that it is a love gesture. I can assure you there is no skin puncture or even a remnant tooth dent. Since a puppy it has been like a pacifier to her to be able to occasionally grab for a finger. Anyway. She was pulling my arm, and we were dancing that familiar Just a moment K which seems to be heard by her pull my arm more K.
This time instead of seeing Kutana asking for what she needed, I recognized she was a messenger providing what I needed. I had additional to-do’s awaiting me that I needed to complete by a certain time. In the moment Kutana was pulling my arm, I was sidetracked and had the risk of shifting energy from easy-going on-time to scrambling not to be late. Just as the co-authors in Hope Has a Cold Nose share about the “knowing” of their hope with fur and cold noses, Kutana was guiding me. It was not her needs she was looking out for. It was mine.
Hearing without words.
Over these past few days, the words that keep running through my mind the loudest are people just want to be heard.
That and everyone one of us are responsible.
We can listen from a place of you and I and them and us. We can communicate our perspective with as much conviction in what we believe as the person(s) we vehemently disagree with their perspective, not recognizing that we are not on opposing sides. Both they and us are coming from the exact same place. Both wish to be heard and valued for what we believe.
One is the Little Soul, and one is the Friendly Soul who are fulfilling an agreement.
Made from unconditional love.
A few years ago, someone very instrumental in Hope Has a Cold Nose coming to be taught me a very powerful tool about the power of choice. In this teaching, he also utilized a quote by Victor Frankl, a Holocaust survivor and author of Man’s Search for Meaning, who wrote: Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
Life may bring us much we cannot control. We have complete control to choose our response.
To this place within the gap where we need to stand in order to move things forward. How do we stand there? What do we do to stand there? We have to reach deep inside ourselves. We have to practice the powers that open the heart, that open the mind…that invite the soul into being. Parker Palmer – Standing in the Tragic Gap (March 2009)
To see that underneath our beliefs, our histories, our values, and our passions
We are the same.
May you and those you hold dearly continue to be held tightly in wellbeing. May hope walk beside every step you take. Namaste’
If you pour a handful of salt into a cup of water, the water becomes undrinkable. But if you pour the salt into the river, people can continue to draw the water to cook, wash, and drink. The river is immense, and it has the capacity to receive, embrace, and transform. When are hearts are small, our understanding and compassion are limited, and we suffer. We can’t accept or tolerate others and their shortcomings, and we demand that they change. But when our hearts expand, these same things don’t make us suffer anymore. We have a lot of understanding and compassion and can embrace others. We accept others as they are, and then they have a chance to transform. So the big question is, how do we help our hearts to grow? – Thich Nhat Hanh
My gratitude to We Are the Mighty for their support of the power of hope!
My gratitude to Southern Living for their support of the power of hope!
For an engaging webinar facilitated by Dr. Alan Westfield, with sharing by Dr. Adrian Popa, Michael Ortiz, Taylor Rowell, and me, please click on the link below:
Listening, Empathy, Awareness & Dignity: LEADership Through Storytelling & Companionship
To purchase Hope Has a Cold Nose:
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or you can contact me: https://christinehassing.com/contact/
For additional impactful and powerful information regarding the healing impact of service dogs, please visit https://www.northwestbattlebuddies.org/a-vision-of-hope/.