We’re Moving!

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 17, 2016

If you’re reading this on your computer, you’re probably sitting down. You might perceive yourself as being stationary. But you aren’t. In fact, every time you think you are not moving, you are wrong. Very wrong. The truth is, you are moving at an incredible speed—every minute of every day.

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Time to Lighten Up

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 10, 2016

When I give talks and retreats, I always say, “Hang on to your sense of humor.” Humor helps us to keep things in perspective. It prevents us from taking ourselves too seriously. And it refreshes our spirit. With those thoughts in mind, here are a few items I hope bring a smile to your face.

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A Walk in the Park

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 3, 2016

I drive to the park to go for a walk. It is a lovely Fall day. Late morning. As I pull into the parking lot, I notice something unusual: there are no other cars around. I walk across the bridge that leads to the path that goes around the lake. Before I set off on […]

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A Few Thoughts on Immigration

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 26, 2016

I confess: I cannot speak completely objectively about immigration. That’s because three of my grandparents were immigrants from Bohemia, now the Czech Republic. All three immigrated as teenagers, leaving their parents and other family members behind. Forever. I can’t imagine what courage that took. My Grandma Svoboda told about coming over in the crammed steerage […]

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Dear Younger Me

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 19, 2016

As we journey through life, we learn a lot of things. We develop all kinds of skills. We grow in wisdom. Here’s a little exercise you might want to try. Imagine you could talk with your younger self—maybe eighteen or so. What advice would you give your younger self from your current age and perspective? […]

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The Day I Was Born

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 12, 2016

I was born on September 16, 1944. It was a Saturday. My mother said I arrived just in time for lunch. But what was happening elsewhere in the world the day I was born? And did these events somehow influence who I became? I was born in the midst of World War II, that massive […]

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The Bristlecone Pine Tree

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 5, 2016

In a remote and inhospitable area of the White mountains in California, there grows a remarkable tree: the Great Basin Bristlecone Pine (Pinus longaeva). These trees rarely exceed 30 feet in height. Their girth isn’t that impressive either. But what is astounding is their age: Some of them are 5,000 years old!

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The Spiritual Practice of Going Barefoot

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 29, 2016

(As I wrote last week, I’m taking a little vacation from my blog. So this week I’m running an earlier reflection from August 26, 2013. I will resume writing my regular blog on Monday September 5.) Someone has said that going barefoot can be a spiritual practice. There’s a scriptural basis for this assertion. When […]

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The Ways We Say Goodbye

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 22, 2016

(I am taking a little vacation from writing this blog. So today and next Monday I am running two of my earlier reflections. This one is from July 22, 2013. I will resume writing new reflections on Monday September 5.) When we part from another person, we ordinarily say “goodbye” in English. The etymology of […]

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The Human Condition and Fear and Faith

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 15, 2016

I’ve been thinking a lot about the human condition lately. The headlines in the news have stimulated my thinking. The phrase human condition is in itself interesting. Being human is a condition—maybe like heart burn or asthma. It’s a condition (though marvelous at times) that comes with built-in limitations. We’re human. That means we make mistakes. (Isn’t that […]

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