I just returned from a weeklong retreat at beautiful Omega Institute in New York. The red, yellow and orange leaves on the trees glistened as the rain came down, renewing the earth with the freshness of life. I too, feel washed clean and nourished by the autumn rain and crispness in the air. I attended two programs. The first was with psychic healer, John of God, and 1,000 fellow participants. Next, I was with Pema Chodron, a Buddhist Nun and 550 other eager students. My favorite teaching from the entire week is from Pema. At the end of one of her long talks, she stood up, draped in her burgundy robes, clasped her tiny hands together and looked lovingly at the audience with a little smile on her humble face. She spoke with eagerness, as though she really wanted to emphasize this point, “As long as you think of things in your lives as obstacles, then they we will be. But as long as you think of things in your lives as the pathway, then they are no longer obstacles.” She was referring to her discourse on opening to what life brings and becoming friends with your mind. I learned a lot about opening wide, and simply being. Just as the fall trees drop their leaves and become barren awaiting the buds of spring, I too entered the stillness of life and befriended all extraneous thoughts, words and actions to dwell in the root of my being in a place of acceptance and non-resistance.