Friday, July 25, 2014

When Words Are Not Enough

Peace dove.png

Photo Credit: "Peace dove". Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

I have often written about the importance of Peace, but I am realizing that sometimes our words are simply not enough to make change.  We must act.  Let me give you an example.

If a person stands at the edge of the sea, sees someone drowning and yells, "Swim," he or she will not make a big difference in whether or not that person drowns.  But, if he or she finds something to throw to that person to hang onto or swims out to rescue them or gets in a boat, rowing out to pull them to safety, his or her actions can make a difference.

Simply saying, "We should be peaceful," no longer is enough.  We must act to stop the hegemony of this world.  We must write to our congress people and our leaders, demanding that they stop supporting the oppressors.  We must, in our day to day actions, show others how to live peacefully.

So, what does this look like?  Let me take you through a hypothetical day.

You wake to a new day.  You begin with recognizing, praising, praying, or meditating on the Source of all.  You prepare for your day, giving thanks as you go along for the food, warm water in your shower, your clothes, your family, or whatever you find for which to give thanks.  You drive to work, allowing the other motorists to go first out of their driveway, rather than gunning your motor to get past. Or, perhaps you commute, so you allow the elder to get on first and give them a seat, rather than pushing past oblivious of who is there.

In work, you help your co-workers without thought of who will get credit for the work.  You communicate thoughtfully and with active-listening skills to clients, realizing that you are there to help them, not make them feel small and stupid.  

Back home in the evening, you listen to your family or friends or flatmates, who have also returned from their day away. You gather together and give thanks for the day, recognizing that gratitude helps us realize how "rich" we truly are.

As I said, this is hypothetical.  Your day may be completely different.  You may be battling a horrible disease, or holding the hand of a dying loved one, or traversing the hills and valleys of a dysfunctional relationship.  However, whatever your day brings you, you can choose to live that day centered in peace; thereby sharing that peace with others.

The horrors of the world around me have made me acutely  aware of the need for action.  Yes, I am but one person, but, I have a voice and I have the ability to write.  So, I have written (my action) on my blog, to my senators and representative, to the president, to friends and relations.  I have asked those in power to do what is just and right to stop the oppression, the genocide, the horror.  

My Light is small, but if it is joined by your Light and the Light of others, we can illuminate the dark corners of the world.  We CAN make a difference, but we must act, even if that action is simply a letter sent to a leader, or a door held, or a hand given in times of need, that action sends ripples across the Universe.

May the words written here tonight touch the hearts, minds and souls of others and may they join me as we work towards bringing Peace to our world.  

Namasté!


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Words Can Nurture Dreams into Reality

  

There is so much in the media today about how when we visualize what we want, we draw it to us.  Many people are creating vision boards.  They cut out pictures, words, quotes, etc., hanging their creation where they can see it daily.  Does it really help?

According to scientists, a vision board re-programs our brain to filter out whatever is deemed unnecessary and focus on what is important.  This is done in the reticular activating system (RAS) located between the medulla oblongata and the mesencephalon.  This tiny part of the brain is what allows parents to sleep soundly as trains rattle the house, yet wake immediately if their child calls out in the night.  The vision board, when viewed daily, focuses what consciously a person has deemed important in their life, thus drawing it to them.

Words are powerful tools in the Law of Attraction.  A poem written by Dorothy Law Nolte, Children Learn What They Live, was popular back in the 70's.  The gist is that when children live in environments that are negative, they become negative; if they live in environments that are positive they become positive.  Therefore, children who are constantly told they are bad, stupid, ignorant, careless, clumsy, etc. become those things.  Likewise, children told they are bright, creative, kind, thoughtful,  become those things.  The Law of Attraction...words becoming reality.

When working with children and adults, I often explain to them that if they write or paint or dance then they ARE a writer, artist, dancer.  Words are powerful...tell the child or anyone to wait until they grow up, get a degree, have more time, whatever - to be an artist, writer, etc. and they may give up their dream.  Tell them they are what they dream already and they will attract the tools needed to become that dream.

When I was a child, I was blessed by the children's librarian who told me I was a poet.  She gave me poetry books to read, encouraging me to write.  Several of my teachers also told me that I was a good writer and poet.  They nurtured my skills, helping me become who I am today...a poet and writer.



Long before the Law of Attraction became a popular device for people, I dreamed of a little Cape Cod home surrounded by lush gardens.  This was a dream that began as a child.  I would draw pictures of the house; I would doodle it; I would cut pictures out of magazines; I would write stories about it.  As an adult, I would talk about my dream.  Guess what?  Today, I live in a little Cape Cod home surrounded by lush gardens. My thoughts, my words nurtured my dream into reality!

What are your dreams?  Write them down, look at them often, believe they are yours!

Namasté!









Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Imagine...




As a teen, the song by John Lennon - Imagine - touched something deep within.  I believed, as many others do, that we can create a world where "all the people (are) Living life in peace..."  But, it takes work and it also takes courage to stand up against the ridiculous, the oppressive and the norm.

So, when I read the story about the 73-year old vet who was fired from Cracker Barrel because he gave some tartar sauce and a corn muffin to a homeless man, I wondered...I imagined how else this could have been handled.

According to the news reports, this was not the first time Joe Koblenzer "violated" company policy.  So, let's imagine that when he first saw a needy person and offered them something from the kitchen the manager, instead of writing him up, sat and discussed the situation.  What if, the manager said,"Gee, Joe, I see you really want to help the homeless people we have here in Venice.  Is there something we can present to the corporate headquarters that we might be able to do to help?  What do you see is the most urgent need?"

Imagine what would have happened if Cracker Barrel corporate listened to Joe's ideas and then instituted policies that perhaps gave good, unspoiled food to a nearby soup kitchen or shelter.  Or, better yet, instituted a policy where homeless people could get a chit for a free meal at Cracker Barrel once a week.  

The corporation wouldn't lose money...it would be a tax deduction.  The homeless people would be able to have a meal with dignity, instead of shame.

I always like to imagine really big, so let's take this to an even HIGHER level.  Imagine if other corporations saw what Cracker Barrel did and followed suit - giving to the communities that support their corporate coffers.  What if these simple acts of kindness extended to job trainings, hirings, and security for some people?  Wow!  The ripple effect from one act of kindness could be far reaching.

So, did Joe Koblenzer's act of kindness ripple forward? Of course!  Acts of kindness always do.  We might not see the results, but they are out there.  

As for Joe...he has been quoted as saying he would do it all again, because it is the right thing to do.  Sometimes doing what is right means going against the rules, as any American who has studied their history knows. We would not be the USA if 241 years ago a group of Massachusetts colonists didn't board British ships and dump tea into Boston Harbor.  Boarding the ships was illegal...as was dumping the tea into the harbor, but this act of civil disobedience began the revolution that created this great country...a country Joe served.  

Imagine all the people...living life in peace...Imagine a world where corporations are recognized for what they are - a legal entity...a thing, not a person and where people are always held above the needs of such entities.

Here is a short video that shows how a random act of kindness can change someone's world.
 



Namasté!