Ann Marie Ruby
This is a picture of me at Grote of Sint-Laurenskerk in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.


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The day comes to an end as I watch Mount Rainier hide behind the cloudy autumn sunset. All the birds are flying back to their nests. The robin’s musical songs displaying dawn chorus started early in the morning. Now they are switching places with the nightingales, however, the musical concert displayed by the birds continue. They do take turns and don’t burn themselves out like we the humans are doing these days. We are all human candles who are burning ourselves out to only keep up with the ones in front of us. We rush and skip steps to make sure no one can make it to where we stand. How is this burning society helping one another?

All I see is a society far more advanced than our forefathers yet so behind them. For they built this society by helping one another, by being there for one another. Yet today we only compete with one another, never watching over the person we step upon. Today we are not building our society but burning down all around us. For if you are burned out, how could we then be?

Individually, we have become the burning candles of this society.

Lessons I take from the best teacher of life, our galaxy. Each morning, dawn breaks open as the sun burns himself out to pour light upon this world. The moon too pours out her glow to keep the children from getting lost within the dark. Burning oneself out for the other, comes naturally. Yet nature, the sun, and the moon take turns for one another. Then why is it we work only for ourselves, not the others? Is it that we have blinded ourselves within tears of sadness, so we do not even see the teardrops of the others?

Humans these days are all pouring out their energies to provide for their families. Parents are working to provide for a home to shelter their families within. They are working nonstop to place food on the table. Never do they let their sweat of labor show upon their tired bodies in front of their family members. For they are always thinking this gesture might inflict hurt and pain upon their loved ones.

A woman, a mother, is always striving to keep up with the rest of the society.

Always worried if she slips and falls back a step, someone will overtake her and she will lose her footing in a society run by men. A mother bear tries to keep her little bear cubs safe and well fed while she herself hides the burning pain within herself.

A father bear tries to keep his emotions hidden as he must never forget he is the man of the house. He must provide for his family and keep his emotions hidden away within the foggy interior of the human chest. For here even in a man’s world, the man too falls behind if he misses a beat. There is always someone better than you. If you skip one day, you will find yourself far back in the line. Maybe you will have to get into the line of job applications, not being able to provide for food or shelter.

These days, I see everyone living day to day. My friend told me she was living hand to mouth. Everyone buys a home and an expensive car. All the families must take a vacation and not forget to upload the pictures for all friends to see. Yet at what cost are you living this perfect social media life?

What about your inner peace?

What about your self-respect?

Also, what about you the human?

Are you at peace knowing you might burn out one day?

Do you sleep at night peacefully balancing your checkbooks, or are you worried you need to put in extra hours at work? Do you share these thoughts with your beloved or do you just keep them hidden within yourself?

What about self-respect? Are you only worried about what the people around you think about you? Why are you not ever worrying about your inner self? What does it matter if you have the brand-new name brand fall sweater on or maybe last year’s white sweater you had bought with so much love? Why could you not wear the perfect sweater again this year? Would you really lose your self-respect in front of others by wearing the same sweater again? Or is it that you lose self-respect by borrowing money from somewhere to gain respect from your so-called friends?

What about the human who watches you in the mirror? What about you? Today why not become the human first who cares for yourself too?

Remember we are all the imperfect humans. We gain weight, we lose weight. We earn money and then again in a flash lose everything. This is life. We all are on a journey where we are all writing our own journals. The travelers we are all.

Let the journals be written and don’t worry about the storms of life.

For unexpected storms of life will come and tear apart the pages of your journals. The flying pages will go missing and it is then you must get back on the path to rewrite yet another journal. It’s called let’s begin again. Don’t worry about the lost pages of your journals. For they will still be upon Earth. Maybe they will land upon someone’s hand, who too is traveling through the same storm you were stuck within. Your lost pages will guide them out of the storm.

You were the unknown teacher of life. Today life is hard and I know all around us there are sufferings. Yet be truthful to yourself and all others around you. Don’t let the false glitters of the reflecting mirrors of social media take you astray. Use this blessed social media for good and let your stories of depression, suffering, job loss, or any trial of life be the guide for the others lost on the same path.

Today’s society is burning itself out as we have too much on our plates.

Let’s all step back and look into the reflecting mirrors of our own lives. The falling leaves of fall is a good example to learn from. Let go of what you can’t handle. You will have all that your true heart desires left on your plate even after you let go. For after letting go of all the obstacles, do remember spring is around the corner.

For all my human brothers and sisters who are burning out because of societal problems, take shelter beneath the wings of hope. Today become the candles of hope, not the burning candles. For if you burn yourself out, then there will be nothing you can light yet everything around you will be in the dark.

My message to all of you is it shall all be all right.

Don’t burn yourselves out. For I believe in hope and I know I must be the candle of hope for everyone. Never be the burning candles, who burn themselves down to light others, for if you are not here to glow then all shall be in the dark pretty soon. You burning yourself down won’t help yourself or others. Settle down and be the hope for yourself and others. We are all on the same path yet yes we all have different earthly vehicles I call our physical bodies. Yet you alone can walk through your life and become a guide for all around you to safety. Be an example of the story of life. Not the fabricated music that will fade within time.

Tonight listen to the nightingales for your musical concert. At dawn, don’t forget to join the dawn’s concert performance given by the singing birds of dawn. Then begin the day with candles of hope as your guide and you be the candles of hope, not the burning candles of this society.

Blessings from Seattle,

Ann Marie Ruby

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