Always Well Within

Calm Your Mind, Ease Your Heart, Embrace Your Inner Wisdom

Do You Need A Sanctuary?


A few days ago, on my birthday, my friend Bo Mackinson pulled a Desert Wisdom Card on my behalf.  See what appeared!  The perfect message.

Sanctuary means:

  • A sacred or holy place
  • A place for tranquility and introspection
  • A place of refuge, protection, and safety

Sanctuary reflects the essence of what I wish to create for myself and for others:

  • I see my heart-mind as a sanctuary of love, compassion and wisdom.
  • I see my body as a sanctuary for my true essence, temporary yet vital and worthy of care and respect.
  • I see my land as a sanctuary of beauty, quiet, and nourishment.
  • I see my blog – Always Well Within – as a sanctuary of sanity and serenity, where you can find rest amidst the busyness of daily life.

In one sense, I’ve lived without sanctuary for the better part of my life.  But now I intend for all that I believe and create to be a form of sanctuary.

Since we can never control externals, the best form of sanctuary lies within.

Should my body wither, as it will one day, I will always have the sanctuary of my pure awareness.  Should my land be swallowed by lava, I will always have the sanctuary of my wisdom intelligence.  Should my blog fall off the internet, I will always have the sanctuary of my selfless presence.

Still, an outer refuge can be a blessing and essential to the development of an inner one.  Just don’t be fooled into believing it’s permanent.

Please enjoy my sanctuary, but also find your personal home.  Find your place of comfort and ease, where love flows ceaselessly from your heart.  Find your place of relief, one you can access at anytime.  Find your true intelligence to guide you to safety whenever you feel lost, distracted, or alone.

This life is not an easy one!  People come and go and even die.  Everything physical you depend on right now will decay, deteriorate, and disappear.   And you’ll need to part with whatever happens to remain when it comes time for your body to say good-bye.

Is a sanctuary exactly what you need?  If so,  don’t wait another moment!  Start to create your own cocoon of comfort and protection this very day.

What would a sanctuary look like to you?  I would love to hear!

P. S. As you may know, I live on the Big Island of Hawai’i.  As I write these words, lava is slowly flowing toward our nearest town (10 miles away) and could reach there in the coming week or two.  Please send positive thoughts, prayers, and your love so that all are safe and the lava finds alternate ways to naturally twist and turn or decide to end its flow before entering town.  I’m safe, but I’m concerned for the people and businesses in Pahoa.  Many thanks!

Thank you also for reading!  If you have a moment, please help me reach others by sharing this post.   If you’re new, please subscribe for free updates by email.  With love, Sandra


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  1. Lily

    I’m finding my sanctuary in self-compassion.

  2. Wow I didn’t know that lava was present on the Big Island. I hope everything is okay. I love Hawaii.

    I think you are right that it is good to have a sanctuary for our mental health. Any place can be a sanctuary also. I find mine to be the night sky. I like to look at it and talk to it. It helps me to reorient myself. I guess a sanctuary for myself would be a place that is peaceful and calm and pretty where I can watch the sunset over the ocean.

    • Yes, there’s are two active volcanoes here, but they aren’t the explosive type. Lava has been flowing from Kilauea almost continuously (but not always) since I’ve been here (almost 5 years), but the active flow has been in an uninhabited area and fed into the ocean. It’s only since June that this flow emerged and began heading in a new way. It’s part of the wonder of living on this island.

      I love the night sky too, especially since we live in an area without street lights. I always feel in awe. I find it so inspiring that you let the night sky embrace you as a refuge. I always love your insights, thanks for sharing them.

  3. What a beautiful post and I love those cards. I think my new blog has become an expression of my sanctuary. Sending prayers for those in the path of the lava.

  4. Hi Sandra – sending blessings to everyone and imagining safety and freedom from lava.

    My peace has always come easily in nature. The fluttering and twittering of birds, the swaying of leaves in the breeze, even the stormy days and powerful rain fill my heart and soul with peaceful relaxing energy.

    I so appreciate the reminder to be aware.

  5. Jean Sampson

    Hi Sandra. I am visualizing the lava stopping outside of the town!
    My sanctuary is probably the way I feel when I am reading and writing poetry. I also have a lovely sanctuary in a group that Joy Holland has created. There are such beautiful spirits who participate and support one another! I have never met most of them, but I dearly love each and every one of them and am amazed that this kind of love and support can be created on-line. Joy is an amazing woman and she attracts equally amazing people, all heart and spirit based and intending to share and grow in love and compassion.
    And, Sandra, you already do create sanctuary in your blog and probably in your life. And now with the strong intention—–WOW, can’t wait to see what happens!

  6. Hi Jean,

    It is amazing how much connection can be created online. I’m glad you have that special sanctuary with Joy. She is amazing. And of course, poetry is very special too.

    Thanks for your kind words. That powerful intention slipped out! Let’s see how it unfolds. Much love to you!

  7. Hi,

    Praying for all those in Hawaai!

    I am using self awareness as my sanctuary.

    • That’s key, isn’t it Joy! Since we can’t always depend on external being in aware in the present is really such a great practice.

  8. Oh I can visualize a sanctuary right now 🙂 I love the door in your post so symbolic, inviting and beautiful. This post is one of my favorite from you. Thanks so much! This is motivating me to set up a better space outside of my office.

  9. Sandra, I do hope and pray for best results from the lava flow. I love sanctuary, in all facets that you wrote about. When we settled on our land to build a home of our own design 15 years ago, we decided the best name would be Sunwise Farm and Sanctuary. It covers the idea that our land will be safe haven for creatures that venture by and away from hunters. and provide the comfort of sanctuary for ourselves and all who visit and stay. Having the overall intention and energy of sanctuary serves all of us, and especially that we want to share this good feeling.

    • What a wonderful name for your farm, Kathleen. I love your intention and that’s exactly how I would like it to be on our land as well. Although I know there are natural predators so there’s no place that can promise ultimate physical safety. So we have to trust that we are more than this body. But I so agree that having the overall intention and energy of sanctuary services us all! Thanks for sharing your story with us.

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