Category Archives: Robin’s Reflections

Back of a VW Combi Van

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I saw this on the back of a good-old-fashioned VW “Combi Van” somewhere between Busselton & Bunbury. The van was very “Sixties” painted & decorated. On the back, in elegant writing, it said quite clearly,

” I’m the one who has to die, so let me live my life the way I want”.


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“Home is people. Not a place. If you go back there after the people are gone, then all you can see is what is not there any more”.

– Robin Hobb


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“What we practice we get good at, whether it be getting stressed or finding peace of mind. Unfortunately we often practise things that are unhelpful and avoid practising things that are helpful”.

– Dr Craig Hassed

The End of a Relationship

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“We may think that we want more than anything for a relationship to last, but the relationship itself usually signals its limitations, as the signs of old age signal death …

It takes courage to read the signals of fate asking for change, asking us to acquiesce to the bitter truths that are revealed slowly and painfully. An ending may be part of the special logic of a relationship, an expression of its logos, its deeply inherent nature and its own laws and requirements”.

– Thomas Moore, in Soul Mates.

Surrendering to Marriage

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“Yet, my fantasy of marriage as a wellspring of contentment has completely disappeared, and so should yours. Thinking you get happiness ever after is a ticket to divorce. I’ll tell you the four things I now know about marriage, from my own transforming relationship and from conversations with other flummoxed spouses:

A.    Marriage can be hell;

B.    The grass is not greener on the other side;

C.    Savour the highs, because one thing you can count on – the dips are just around the corner; and

D.    Nobody is perfect, so you may as well love the one you’re with.

To get to this stage took a lot of work and a lot of tears. I cannot imagine going through this psyche-searing task again with someone new. Therefore, I surrender to this imperfect marriage, because I love it more than I hate it and I committed to this man with a promise that I need to, we all need to, do our best to fulfill.


–    Iris Krasnow: Surrendering to Marriage.

Needing other People

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“We are wired psychologically and biologically to need other people. A relational bond with another person that provides an ongoing, pervasive sense of safety and security provides a secure base – a safe harbour from existential loneliness and despair, and a bioenergetic launching pad from which to brave the outside world”.

– Marion Solomon & Stan Tatkin

Good times and Bad times

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“… And it never failed that during the dry years the people forgot about the rich years, and during the wet years they lost all memory of the dry years. It was always that way.”

– John Steinbeck


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“Prayer is a paper ship of wakefulness on the stream of worldly weariness”.

– Peter Hoeg. 

A Certain Person

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“We have an illusion that a certain time, a certain place, a certain person is the only way. Without it or them, we are lost.

It is not true. Impermanence teaches us this. There is no one thing to hold on to.”

– Natalie Goldberg, in Long Quiet Highway.

One-way Relationships

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Today, whilst reflecting on an intimate relationship that had ended against her will and control, one of my patients (who gave me permission to quote her) said,

“I’ve realized, you can’t develop a relationship one-way”.

How many of us have realized that too, or accepted that yet… ?

Your Life Plan?

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“Doesn’t everything die at last and too soon?

Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?”


– Mary Oliver. 

Are you being Cleared Out?

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“This being human is a guest-house

Every morning a new arrival.


A joy, a depression, a meanness,

some momentary awareness comes

as an unexpected visitor.


Welcome and entertain them all!

Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,

who violently sweep your house

empty of its furniture,


still treat each guest honourably.

He may be clearing you

out for some new delight.


The dark thought, the shame, the malice,

meet them at the door laughing,

and invite them in.


Be grateful for whoever comes,

because each has been sent

as a guide from beyond.”



– RumiThe Guest-House.

Changing the World

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“We must become the changes we want to see in the world”.

– Mahatma Ghandi


“Unless someone like you cares a lot, it’s not going to happen, it’s not”.

– Dr Suess – from The Lorax.


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“A problem is a stepping stone to a higher spiritual level”.

Janice Dommisse; in conversation.