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Happy Graduation! Words for life travel and exploration-thanks Rumi

Hawaiian lotus, beauty from the mud
Hawaiian lotus, beauty from the mud
Lisa TE Sonne (c)

tt's that time of year when kids are getting diplomas and we can all take stock of what we have learned, and what we seek.   Travelling and exploring are often as much intangible as they are physical, as much spirit as geography, so I thought I would share a graduation speech delivered this month by Lauren Roedy, a talented writer and English teacher at Westmark School in Encino, California. 

WHAT YOU SEEK… Lauren Roedy
One of my favorite poets, Rumi, said, “What you seek is seeking you.” That is just rockin’. “What you seek is seeking you.” That means that life really wants you to have what you desire, what your heart longs for. It’s a unique yearning inside each of us. If you can acknowledge the munificence of life and its benevolence, then a richness of being opens up for you and you are found.

Life, your special corner of it, IS looking for you. If you can stand still, quiet your mind, be present, then you will shine as a beacon in the moment. Your life will just show up and find you because the path to you is evident. Your job is just to clear the psychic rubble. Once you do that, who you need to meet, what you need to do, all you are meant to achieve will be presented to you. This is really how life works.

You are all royalty and your kingdom is waiting for you to take charge. Sometimes, though, we get in the way of this divine, regal plan by listening to the bad roommate in our head (as Anne Lamott so aptly put it); that dude is the voice of doubt and criticism and shame. The voice that tells you that you aren’t enough UNLESS you get that man, or have that job, or earn that degree, or look a certain way, or have that bank account.

That little, annoying voice is very limiting. It keeps you from getting all that you are meant to have. It only talks of external experiences and judgments. It creates the rubble. It tries to make you believe in things that aren’t real. Don’t let it. It’s all garbage. If you can kick that guy out, and align yourself with the voice of life that will always tell you that who you are this second is perfect, if you can do that and really know that is true…then, my dear students of the class of 2010, you will change this world. You don’t even have to know how. But, that is how it will be done. With a whisper from yourself…not from a bang outside of you.

Once you align with life, become present, and loving to yourself, things you never thought of or never thought possible will begin to appear. It’s not magic. It’s life. And right now, too much of what we think is living is not life at all. Most of it is make believe. You’ll know that you’ve aligned with life, that you’ve kicked out the bad roommate in your head when peace becomes a way of life for you. Deep, abiding, powerful, change-the-world kind of peace. And that is your destiny. That is what this world needs. And you are just the people to do it. Congratulations, sweet princes and princesses of the class of 2010. Will the first row please stand.

© -Lauren Roedy, Westmark School Graduation, June, 2010

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  • Shari Cohen 5 years ago

    A beautiful, inspiring speech by Lauren Roedy to her students.
    Thank you for sharing this.

  • Matt Kaminsky 5 years ago

    An amazing writer and teacher. The Westmark kids have no idea how lucky they are to have her.

  • Seth Donsky 5 years ago

    One for the ages.

    This is something these kids will remember and pass onto to the next generation of seekers.

  • Diane Roedersheimer 5 years ago

    There is true wisdom here, not just for graduates, but for the entire world. We all need that valuable reminder to kick out the "bad roommate."

  • Bruce Seifert 5 years ago

    This is a great reminder for all of us. These words are powerful seeds that will hopefully take root in each of those young adults. Lauren is a gifted and talented writer.

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