Galen Pearl

Galen Pearl

Galen Pearl

Shine Like Venus

Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. ~C. S. Lewis

When my dog Rosie was a puppy, she was so terrified of other dogs that I could not take her for a walk. So I went to a wonderful trainer for help. We were in a big empty room. The trainer brought in an old collie. The dog didn’t care doodley squat about Rosie and just lay down, completely ignoring Rosie. 

Rosie circled around, alert and anxious, but gradually approached the collie. As she got closer, the trainer kept praising her in a high baby voice. “So brave, Rosie. So brave.”  

Rosie was indeed being brave. Not Lassie running into a burning building to save Timmy brave, but taking one timid tiny step closer to what scared her brave. That collie was her testing point.

Some of us do not recognize the courage it takes to see things as they are, to see ourselves as we are. We are brave when we admit we are afraid, when we offer compassion to a stranger, when we are generous with our time, when we give ourselves permission to have healthy boundaries, when we stay with our practice in challenging times, when we forgive ourselves and others, when we pause to take a breath before reacting, when we trust in the basic goodness of the universe. 

We can be the heroes of our own lives when we realize that we are at a testing point and that we are doing the best we can. “So brave, so brave.” 

I have seen everything
I have no fear
I have the heart of a lion
I shine like Venus

10 thoughts on “Shine Like Venus”

  1. Galen, thank you for this. These words really resonated with me, "We are brave…when we stay with our practice in challenging times". My goal is to look back on this crisis and be proud of how I behaved.

  2. I just a while back "grokked" that there will be no going back after this, to who and what we were before CV19. I pray that you, Galen, and the rest of us, will be able to find peace during this very trying time.

  3. Grok — now there is a very useful word I haven't heard in a long time. Stranger in a Strange Land — right? Perhaps that title describes all of us these days. Hmm…. Thanks for commenting, DJan.

  4. Wow, this was perfect for times like this. Yes, we all must be courageous and brave. I enjoyed reading this one and loved the quotes too.
    Sending prayers, love and hugs your way!

  5. I like the idea of the testing point, Galen. In life there are moments that you become aware of in yourself – that right then, right there, you are on the brink of a testing point. You feel it, you know it. And in an instant you have to decide to have the courage to act or say something, or that it isn't worth it on this occasion. If i feel in that moment, I will regret it later within myself for not acting, then I act. it takes a lot of self awareness or course, but that becomes a habit – a good habit! Stay well, Galen :>)

  6. That is a great description of the process, Lynne. It also emphasizes the importance of practice because, as you say, something can come up fast and there is not always a lot of time. Practice builds habits that will compress the time needed to discern the right course. Thanks for commenting.

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