My country, tis of Thee
Sweet land of liberty, of Thee I sing
~ Samuel Francis Smith
The other night we saw the movie, Acts of Valor. The movie used real Navy SEALs showing true events in the lives of the SEALs. It brought to my attention something I tend to forget, which is how lucky I am to be an American and live in the United States. I forget to appreciate the men and women in our armed services who protect our freedom in places far from, and totally unlike, Gaylord, Michigan. This freedom I take for granted on a daily basis. It brought me face-to-face with the families of the service men and women. I get a brief glimpse of it from some of my patients who are married to servicemen who serve our country. This movie showed me the reality of it, and the long wait spouses endure until their loved ones come home.
I will not share the details of the movie, as I would highly recommend you see it. I will, however, share the poem that was read at the end.
Chief Tecumseh’s Words of Wisdom
So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart.
Trouble no one about their religion;
Respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours.
Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life.
Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people.
Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the Great Divide.
Always give a word or a sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend,
even a stranger, when in a lonely place.
Show respect to all people and grovel to none.
When you arise in the morning give thanks for the food and for the joy of living.
If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself.
Abuse no one and no thing, for abuse turns the wise ones to fools
and robs the spirit of its vision.
When it comes your time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled
with the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep
and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way.
Sing your death song and die like a hero going home.
~Chief Tecumseh 1768-1813 Shawnee Nation
I would ask as you read this poem to consider how you can apply it to your life.
- Respect others in their view, and demand they respect yours ~ how can I respect others where they are? I may think I know what they should be doing. How can I remember, I am not in charge of another’s life? How can I honor myself and speak up for myself when I am in a situation that is not good for me? How can I say out loud…this is what I need?
- Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Appreciate, work on my life, and send love to all who are around me. If I do this I won’t have time to worry about what others should doing.
- Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people. Where am I in service to those around me?
- Always give a word or a sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend,
even a stranger, when in a lonely place. I always remember Jan Cotant’s words of wisdom ~ be inclusive not exclusive! I need to work on this.
- When you arise in the morning give thanks for the food and for the joy of living.
If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself. How can I remember when I am in a funk, the easiest way out is appreciation?
- When it comes your time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song and die like a hero going home. Recently, three men I know have died: Two were teachers; one a wonderful friend; all three were kind and gentle souls who left this earth way too soon. How can I remember to live my life as a gentle soul, to respect others, to appreciate my life, work on my life, give service and be kind? Then hopefully, at the end, I won’t be in a panic, saying, Wait! I forgot to be kind and gentle, to respect others and to appreciate the many blessings I was given.
- Today I will fill my heart with love and appreciation. I will pass this on to those I meet as I walk through my day. I will be thankful and proud I am a citizen of the United States of America. I will be bold when I see a serviceman or woman and walk up to them and say, thank you for doing what you do. I will send blessings to their families. I will live my life fully, now, so when it is my time, I can go in peace.
Till next time ~ Mary
Mary’s Musings are a random thought. It may be a quote, a question, an idea, or something happening in the world. Enjoy a moment to yourself and contemplate this thought. Ask yourself how it feels and where it leads. Breathe . . . and see where her musings take you.