On this site I offer Tips, Tricks, and Wisdom for Living Life!

No Regular Post Today

My laptop, which has been steadily going downhill for the last year finally quit today.

I have ordered a new hard drive, ram and a battery for it in the hopes that I will be able to be up and running sometime soon. Of course, since I am replacing the hard drive and the manufacturer (MSI – Micro Star International) did not see fit to provide a copy of the Windows 7 disk, I also had to pay for new operating software.

Since I do all the writing on my laptop and my idea starters for the blog are stored there, I will not be writing for the next couple of days, until I get the new parts and are able to rebuild the computer. I have another computer I can use, but because I have spent all day attempting to get this laptop running and have new carpet coming Wednesday morning, I do not really have the amount of time I need to write, right now.

I am failing in my hopes of writing and sharing my thoughts each weekday but I will make up for it once I get everything back to normal.

For me, this is a great opportunity to practice living in peace, which is easier to talk and write about than it is to actually live. While I have been frustrated that my laptop has not cooperated today, I have not been so upset that I lost my sense of well-being. It is what it is and that’s just the way of it.

For today, just consider these wordsThe most important path we ever take is the one that leads to our center.

Bucky’s Approximation of TRUTH

Buckminster Fuller has been touted as one of the greatest minds of the twentieth century. I will not go into depth about this man, as the internet is filled with information on him, but I will state that he is someone who greatly intrigues me. He had an amazing mind and his observations of everything spiritual always resonated with me.

Courtesy of VeggieGretz on Morguefile.com

Courtesy of VeggieGretz on Morguefile.com

I once read that he considered himself a verb, because he could never have been a noun, a “thing.” As you will read in a minute, he also considered the Universe a verb, because like himself, it was constantly evolving.

Today I want to share Bucky’s observations on Truth:

TRUTH   

I have learned that truth
Is an omnipresent, omnidirectional,
Evolutionary awareness,
One of those myriadly multiplying facets
Discloses that there are no “absolutes”
– No “ends in themselves” – no “things”
– Only transitionally transformative verbing.
 
It seems possible to me
That God may be recognizable
In man’s limited intellection
Only as the weightless passion drive
Which inspires our progressive searching
For the – momentarily only –
And only most-truthful-thus-far-possible-
Comprehension of all the interconnections
Of all experiences.
It seems then to me
That the nearer we come to the
Orderly omni-interrelationships
Of all the weightless complex
Of all generalized principles
Which seem to be disclosed to us
As so important
As to be tentatively identified as God.
For it is the integratable interrelationships
Of all the generalized laws
Which apparently govern
The great verb “Universe
Of the vastly greater
– Because comprehensively anticipatory –
Verb intellecting
Which verb of optimum understanding
May be “God”.

Courtesy of Geralt on Pixabay.com

Courtesy of Geralt on Pixabay.com

 
It seems that Truth
Is progressive approximation
In which the relative fraction
Of our spontaneously tolerated residual error
Constantly diminishes.
–Fuller, R. Buckminster, & Dil, A. (1983). Humans in universe (pp. 188-189). New York, NY: Mouton.

I love the idea that as our understanding increases the distance between our intellectualized version of God (the God we create in our own image) and the Truth of the Universe, which is this Energy, diminishes. I can see this gap continuing to narrow with every ounce of wisdom we discover.

Take these words into the silence and see if they speak to you, as they do to me. As I have stated, repeatedly, I feel it is impossible for the mind, the human mind, to comprehend the Oneness of the Universe. As such, it is also impossible to put a concept which cannot be intellectualized into concrete terms. That said, I feel like Buckminster Fuller’s effort, in these words, approaches perfection as nearly as anything I have ever read.

Hope: Friend or Foe?

I have always been a “glass is half full” type of person, but sometimes I wonder if a “glass is half empty” personality leads one to more peacefulness?

Thanks to Geralt on Pixabay

Thanks to Geralt on Pixabay

I know people who make no effort to find blessings in all of life. I have always looked for the treasure in every experience, even if I had to dig through mountains of excrement; I’ve always possessed some certainty that there was some raw diamond to be found in the experience.

Despite my perpetual positive attitude I’m not sure that I actually spend any greater time dwelling in peace than those I know who do not share these tendencies.

I have a friend who repeatedly states that she hates her work, yet leaving the job is never even considered as a possibility. She spends her Sundays in mourning, depressed about the upcoming Monday morning. This same person refuses to hope because she has a powerful fear of disappointment.

Where I see opportunity this lovely soul focuses on risks. In a situation where I can see a possible beautiful outcome, she sees only possible discomfort.

When I hope, she refuses. She prefers not expecting; therefore giving herself the possibility of a pleasant surprise if something good happens, instead of risking the disappointment of hoping and having that desire unfulfilled.

I offer this background because it is possible that this individual’s balance, durability and tendency to stay on an even keel through life’s up and downs may be greater than mine.

Thanks to Geralt on Pixabay

Thanks to Geralt on Pixabay

She is seldom flustered by disappointment, since she refuses to hope. I, on the other hand, can have dramatic mood swings when things do not go the way I had hoped they would. There is some wisdom to be found in not giving desire any power, whatsoever.

To me, life has always seemed a little flat without my investment in hopes and dreams. I am not saying that my friend has no desires; she simply does not allow herself to anticipate any outcomes, thereby shielding herself the unhappiness inherent in disappointment.

It’s possible that I will never change. I am sixty and I still love the mystery of a surprise. I always have. As a kid, I loved Christmas Eve. We did not open presents until Christmas morning and that night, lying in bed trying to sleep, was the most magical of the whole year. To some degree, I embrace that love of mystery in my everyday existence. I find the pain associated with disappointment to be less risky than the thought of losing this enthusiasm for life.

While I can never really be inside the head of my friend, she, unknowingly, teaches me. She certainly rolls with the flow of life with less turbulence than I do. She is not tossed and turned, with the ups and downs of life’s movement.

I would never want to give up my love of anticipation, but there is some wisdom, to be found, in not giving unfulfilled hopes any power. It is a lesson that I am still learning. I am very grateful to have such a wise friend helping me find what is apparently the more peaceful, middle ground.

Prayer for an Open Heart and Mind

 

Today just nearly got away with me, before I remembered I had not posted to Secrets to Peace.

I have been doing energy healing and spiritual counseling ever since 1997 when I took my first Reiki class. One of the things I think I do really well is to listen. I Listen without input on what needs to be done, that is. Sometimes when someone is so caught up in their story that I may see their energy field depleting as they are telling it. At these times I utter a quiet prayer.

I hold this in prayer in my mind when my own thoughts sway toward judgment or I find myself wanting to fix the other person. This is the prayer I hold in mind when a client begins reciting past hurts, which are well committed to their memory. As open-hearted and open-minded as I am most of the time, habitual regurgitation of one’s destructive story causes me to struggle to simply dwell in love

Here is my little prayer:                                                          sage

You smile

     obviously suppressing pain

Yet you can’t wait

     to share your grief.

I have learned more about you

     in five minutes

Than I know about others

     after many hours.

I must avoid

     placing you in a box,

Failing to listen

     in my egoic knowing.

May I be fully present

    loving the truth of who you are

Corralling my tendency

      to judge, to qualify.

Even though I do not, while listening, start thinking of ways to help my client, I do remind them, once they are done telling their stories, that they are not the stories which they tell. They are the witness to the stories. They are the thought power which decides the aspects of the stories to included in the retelling and which parts to leave out.

It always amazes me how much people rely on the past for a present identity.

There are several writers I would like to quote here, but since I have only twenty minutes to get this out and still make it before midnight and since my cat is fighting me for the keyboard I am going to close with the reminder to all of you. WE are not our stories. We are so very much more.

Be Peace and use this prayer when a friend is locked up in her story and you are having to work to remain non-judgmental.

 

Much Love to all of you.

Forgive NOW and Let Go of Fear

 

Every time I introduce myself, be it on a group for Facebook, on Twitter, or any of the other Social Sites, I always introduce myself as being a student of Love striving to become the greatest expression of Love of which I am capable.

My experience has taught me that there are only two hindrances to being the free-flowing expression of Love, which I hope to become. Number one is that I am afraid. Either I am afraid that I will be rejected in one way or another or I am frightened by the possibility of giving love that is not returned, which is really just another way of stating the same fear of rejection.

Thanks to Senlay on Pixabay

Thanks to Senlay on Pixabay

Number two is that my ego tells me that the person before me is not worthy of my love. Perhaps he/she has done something I disagree with, and somewhere in my mind I decide to withhold my love, with this behavior or action as my justification. This second choice is actually easier to change because it is simply a matter of immediate forgiveness.

Since our wants, likes and dislikes are so deeply ingrained in our personality, it never seems to work if I merely attempt “not” to judge an individual whose behavior is troubling me. I have found that it is far easier, for me, to notice the irritating action and immediately forgive it. The simple question, “Is this really worth sacrificing my peace of mind over?” is usually enough to remind me to forgive my brother or sister, for my own sake.

The first reason for not loving is a far more complex problem. Fear hides itself, within our learned behaviors. We make up all kinds of stories about why we don’t love, because we are not interested or we are too intimidated to honestly recognize that at the core of the withheld love is fear. This fear of vulnerability is something we discussed in the July 6th Secret to Peace entitled To Live is to be Vulnerable . Today I want to examine this a bit further.

Consider these words from Gangaji:

Most everything we do is to avoid vulnerability. We dress up in grown-up clothes, and play at doing grown-up work, in an attempt to escape the defenseless innocence associated with child. But innocence is not limited to children. It is possible for you as an adult to be consciously vulnerable and innocent. You can consciously hurt. You can consciously suffer. When you suffer consciously, suffering is revealed not to be what you thought. In conscious suffering, you are no longer fighting the suffering. You are consciously present in it. Then suffering itself reveals the Buddha, Christ’s heart, God revealing Itself to you on the mountain. If suffering is met as it appears, then suffering is discovered not to be suffering. But the intention is not to meet suffering to get rid of it. The innocent intention is to meet suffering as it is, even if it means feeling hurt.

Most people are more afraid of having their feelings hurt

Thanks to SimonaR on Pixabay

Thanks to SimonaR on Pixabay

than they are having their bodies hurt. But the willingness to be hurt is crucial. Without the willingness to be hurt, there is no willingness to love, no willingness to die, no willingness to live, no willingness to be.

It is easy to see from your own life experience that no matter how much you try to run away from hurt, you still experience it. To stop the running, to turn and experience what is chasing you, open and unprotected, you have to be willing to be free. Are you willing to be free?

You can examine your life and see for yourself what you are running from, what you are trying to escape. It may be very subtle. But just in the seeing of it, there is the possibility of a deeper opening. Gangaji. The Diamond in Your Pocket: Discovering Your True Radiance. Boulder, CO: Sounds True, 2005. Pp. 204-05. Print.

To Love requires the ability to be totally truthful with oneself. This is why I stated that the fear of vulnerability, the fear of rejection, the fear of being hurt is so much harder to overcome than is learning to immediate forgive indiscretions which are simply not that important. These fears are deeply ingrained within us, and after having children, I am not totally convinced that we do not come on the planet with some of these embedded in our psyches.

If one truly hopes to become the greatest expression of Love they are capable of becoming, he or she must learn to be quiet enough to question every truth they hold sacred.

Thanks to Bonnybbx on Pixabay

Thanks to Bonnybbx on Pixabay

Many, many of our truths are totally unexamined. We cannot love fully without discarding all so-called truths which block our ability to be fearless, when it comes to loving.

I posted a quote, this week, on my Intuitive Endeavors Facebook page, in which Rollo May said: “The inner sense of worth that comes with being in love does not seem to depend essentially on whether the love is returned or not.” — May, Rollo. Love and Will; Rollo May. New York: Norton, 1969. Print.

By this quote and from my life experience it is obvious, to me, that the choice to love pays dividends which far exceed any of the pain involved in moving through my fears. By forgiving, immediately, acts which the old Elliott would have taken personally and found offensive, I reclaim my right to choose freedom. I choose to love; to not be owned by mental thought patterns that were created before I was awake.

Freedom is a choice.
Loving is a choice.

Thanks to Unsplash for this photo

Thanks to Unsplash for this photo

Loving sets us free.
All other options
Keep us imprisoned,
Behind walls we
Never knew were there.

I choose Love.
I choose to Love you.
Even if you may hurt me.
Even if you already have.
And So It is.

 

Get to KNOW Yourself, by all Means

Every time we have a shocking event, which unfortunately is far too often, the media inundates us with an unending flood of experts from all known fields of human behavior. Always the one overriding, compelling question that each inquiring mind seeks to answer is “Why?”  It seems there is some secret agreement that if we only understood why this person did what they did, it would somehow lessen the terrible pain we all feel.

The sad thing, to me, is that no matter how many hours of conjecture we subject fireman-911ourselves to, there is no way to comprehend the mind of a person, so lost, so confused, or so detached that it could be capable of horrific, mindless, unconscionable action.

While I do not believe we will ever fully understand the “why” of an individual deranged enough to wantonly kill some targeted group of people, I do believe we can safely assume that the said perpetrator had no grasp of the Truth of his being. Consider these words:

“I believe that people who get to know themselves won’t create wars; people won’t have a need to kill people. When people get to know and understand themselves, they will be more loving. There won’t be a need to perpetuate violence and hatred. When people go within and connect with themselves, they realize they are connected to the universe and they are connected to all living beings.” – Armand Dimele*

*Spirituality, intimacy, and creating real relationships. (2005). In Sorah Dubitsky (Ed.), A chorus of wisdom: Notes on spiritual living from Gerald G. Jampolsky [and others] (p. 84). Berkeley, CA: Ulysses Press : Written by Armand Dimele

When I taught young teenagers in Sunday School and later convicted felons in Federal Prison, my primary focus was always on helping individuals learn how to know themselves with a deeper level of understanding than they had previously attained. My mission, in such settings, was always very clear to me because I knew, as Dimele wrote, that once we discover who and what we are, our lives are forever changed.

When one sets out on a spiritual journey they soon realize that it is absolutely imperative to develop unfailing honesty. And while this level of integrity is ultimately essential in all shadow-manof their relationships, in-depth self-discovery cannot occur without it.

This concept seems pretty simple, even straightforward, right? Yet, I frequently encounter people who have, over the years, lost touch with what is real and what is fabrication.  I think we all do this, to a certain degree, until we get to know our true selves and the need to pretend disappears.

It is remarkable, to me, that we must “learn” how to be honest with ourselves. Yet, most people who have ever begun a spiritual quest soon found out that self-honesty was significantly more difficult than it seemed it should have been While most parents teach their children the importance of honesty, it is often only the significance of being truthful with others which is stressed. The idea of self-honesty is often unaddressed or simply taken for granted. Unfortunately, often these same parents are better at talking about integrity than they are at demonstrating it, especially when it comes to stories they tell about themselves. Because most of us have grown up with such concern over the opinions of others, it is not surprising that we have developed habits of embellishing our personal stories, both in positive and negative ways. Once we begin, in earnest, the reflection necessary for self-discovery, we can find it really difficult to release old ideas about our identity, many of which we have accepted as truth, sometimes for decades.

When I taught, I felt my most important task was to help individuals learn how to find the Truth of their nature. Every mystic, I have ever studied, found their way to wisdom by looking inside and learning that the Truth of their Being was much greater than at first imagined.speakers-

I agree with Armand and know that when people truly know who and what they are, they find very difficult, if not impossible, to harm others. The first thing one realizes, when they have any type of True Self-Identity epiphany, is that we are all connected to each other. The Truth is that there is no separate self which exists to hurt some other separate self. When we discover who we are and learn to forgive ourselves we only want to help our brothers and sisters. We cannot love ourselves and long to hurt our family or our planet. These two ideas are mutually exclusive.

I used to shutter when I would read some mystic insisting that the greatest good we could do for humanity was to learn to heal ourselves, but now I agree totally. The bottom line is that there is no separate self to heal. All healing affects the whole of humanity, also known as the Self.

Every ounce of love we learn to give ourselves is a gift to the entire planet. Loving myself is the natural result of learning the Truth of who and what I AM. There is no greater lesson to learn, no course of study as important.

My God is LOVE

A little while back, I read a story about a blogger who had been sued for using a photograph which she had downloaded from Google images. It was the second such story I had read, in the last couple of months on the same topic. As any of you know, if you have read me for any time, I pay attention to such coincidences, thinking that they are significant if I notice them repeatedly.

While I have always been careful to get my images from sites which gave permission for their use, it is possible that even with such due diligence; I could be deceived by someone who shared the picture without being the owner of said photo.

So, I decided that on all future photographs, I would request permission from the reported owner, before posting in order to have some proof of my effort. It would be far easier to just buy the photos, but since I do not generate any income with my blog or with my Facebook page, I can hardly afford to purchase a dozen or so pictures a week to fill all my needs.

I am giving you all this background data so that the following will make sense. couple-in love

Recently I wrote to an individual who had posted some pictures on Flickr with a creative commons license, requesting permission to use a few of his photographs on my Facebook page. He promptly wrote back giving me permission to use his prints in accordance with the creative commons license.

He also wrote me a second email and told me that he was an atheist and that he felt compelled to tell me this in an effort to dispel the myth that being an atheist was synonymous with having immoral behavior. After telling me that he was a loving father, was faithful to his woman, and was ‘very giving, almost to a fault, he added, “The reason I feel it so important to inform good people like you that I am an atheist is to help stop the belief that atheist’s and agnostic’s stray from morals.”

I had sent this man a link to my Facebook page, where I post pictures with quotes from my readings ( facebook.com/one1now ) so I was surprised when he quoted something I had written on my Secrets to Peace blog. What surprised me most, however, was this idea that being atheist or agnostic somehow meant that one would be lacking in morals. I wonder who would choose to believe such a faulty myth. couple-254684_1920

After considering it, for some time, I decided that one would have to be very confident, in the validity of their own beliefs, to apply such stereotypes to these groups of individuals. While the number of religious people has been steadily declining in the last ten years, the number of atheist and agnostic individuals has grown, according to the Pew Research Center.

When you consider that “Spiritual but not Religious” is now the third leading response, when people in the world are questioned about their faith (after Christianity and Islam) it seems far more realistic to assume that there are people who make kind and unkind choices within the group which identifies itself as atheists and agnostics, just as there are moral and immoral individuals in all of the worlds religions. No one organization could possibly have a monopoly on either extreme of human behavior.

My point is this: Why would anyone believe that a person’s religious beliefs dictated their ethical behavior? We have all known reported Christians who were very immoral and those who sought to live as Jesus taught. Obviously, we know the vast majority of those who follow the teachings of Muhammad are peace-loving individuals and that only small percentages live their lives without regard for the rest of humanity. So how could anyone lump all self-professed atheists or agnostics into a sub-category of human behavior which is without moral fiber?

I believe it was a philosophy class, when I was much younger, which taught me to avoid all use of never or always when speaking of humans because neither extreme is usually true when speaking of any condition of the human psyche. It would have never occurred to me to classify all atheists as having low moral character. There are many famous atheists, currently and throughout history, who have been scientists and other individuals who contributed amazing things to society and there have been many famous religious people who have sought death and destruction in the name of their God. The choice of whether or not an individual believes in the existence of God could never be the sole indication of their moral character. in loveThe latter can only be determined by the choices this individual makes and demonstrates when coexisting with his/her fellow humans and with the planet, as a whole.

I really like this quote by Anne Lamott, someone who is quite spiritual. She said: “You can safely assume that you have created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people that you do.” We see people, supposed Christians from right here in Topeka, Kansas on the news all the time carrying signs proclaiming the things and the people whom the God of their creation hates. I would consider myself an atheist before I would ever follow a God of hate.

Consider these five facts about atheists from Pew Research:

  1. The number of people who identify themselves as atheists in the United States has been rising, modestly but steadily, in recent years. Our aggregated data from 2012 show that 4% of American adults say they are atheists when asked about their religious identity, up from 1.6% in 2007.
  2. Atheists, in general, are more likely to be male and younger than the overall population;67% are men, and 38% are ages 18-29(compared with 22% of all U.S. adults). About four-in-ten atheists (43%) have a college degree, compared with 29% of the general public.
  3. Although the literal definition of “atheist” is “a person who believes that God does not exist,”according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, 14% of those who call themselves atheists also say they believe in God or a universal spirit. That includes 5% who say they are “absolutely certain” about the existence of God or a universal spirit. Alternatively, there are many people who fit the dictionary definition of “atheist” but do not call themselves atheists. More Americans say they do not believe in God or a universal spirit (7%) than say they are atheists (2.4%).
  4. Not all atheists see a contradiction between atheism and spirituality.A quarter (26%) say they think of themselves as spiritual people, and 3% consider themselves religious  Four-in-ten atheists (41%) say they often think about the meaning and purpose of life.
  5. Among atheists,82% say they either often (52%) or sometimes (30%) feel a deep connection with nature and the earth; among all American adults, 85% either often (58%) or sometimes (26%) feel such a connection.

(Source: http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/10/23/5-facts-about-atheists/ )

Personally, due to my experience of life, I know, with no uncertainty, that there is a unifying force which animates all of life. Oftentimes, I identify this One Power as God. Mostly I call it Love. Frequently, I refer to it as Source. This Oneness, which exists, in me, as me, is not real similar to the idea of God I was taught as a child growing up in a Southern Baptist Church. While such teachings were a part of my spiritual foundation, everything I insist I know, today, has come to me as a result of my meditation, my time spent in the quiet. There I found answers to all of my questions, and in-fact, had all of my questions erased. in the quiet

Knowing what I know, I still consider myself agnostic, which is why I find “facts” three and four of the Pew Research so interesting. I call myself agnostic, because I do not believe we can ever know what this One Power is, fully. It is so far beyond the mind’s ability to comprehend, any attempt to identify or quantify its existence is, as Anne Lamott suggested, creating God in our own image. It cannot be done, not with any integrity. Any attempt to do so only proves that such definition is coming from the ego and not from Awareness.

The man I met on flickr was clearly a beautiful soul. In the end, being a loving being is far more important to humanity than believing in some religion. My religion is Love. Everyone who truly loves honors the same God I strive to emulate.

Peace is ours when we acknowledge the Light (another term I use for the One Power) in one another. This Life Force thrives in every rock, tree, plant, animal, and human. When we look at the world through awakened eyes we can see that everything vibrates with this Energy: (Even the individual, who has turned away from the Light, still carries within his/her being a flicker of this Truth.) When we are able to see this Light, glowing, within another, Love is the only prudent choice we can make. This does not depend upon religion. This is a choice, just as loving your wife and family and showing up to love your neighbor as yourself.

The choices we make in honoring one another are far more important than the labels we use to identify our religious beliefs. Choosing Love is choosing Life, regardless of whether or not one professes a belief in someone else’s God.

 

 

Focus on the Magnificence in your Neighbor

My family and I have lived in our current home for almost sixteen years. We moved in on my birthday in 1999. When we moved here it was for the convenience. I was selling Real Estate,friends 330  at the time, and had an exclusive listing on a brand new subdivision which was ready to begin, a block from this house.

Prior to moving in, I knew a couple of people in the neighborhood; such is the nature of living in what is, in actuality, a small town, despite over a hundred thousand people living here. While we have always enjoyed our home, what has been and remains the most wonderful blessing of our move here are our neighbors. We have found really good friends here; loving, kind people who make our lives richer by their actions and their spirits.

This is why when I read this writing from Robert Heinlein, it really spoke to me. Undoubtedly, some of you will have read this, but I encourage you to reread it with an open heart. I think it is very wise.

This I Believe

I am not going to talk about religious beliefs but about matters so obvious that it has gone out of style to mention them. I believe in my neighbors. I know their faults, and I know that their virtues far outweigh their faults.

Take Father Michael down our road a piece. I’m not of his creed, but I know that goodness and charity and loving kindness shine in his daily actions. priest_holdingup_chalice_red 330I believe in Father Mike. If I’m in trouble, I’ll go to him.

My next-door neighbor is a veterinary doctor. Doc will get out of bed after a hard day to help a stray cat. No fee — no prospect of a fee — I believe in Doc.

I believe in my townspeople. You can knock on any door in our town saying, “I’m hungry,” and you will be fed. Our town is no exception. I’ve found the same ready charity everywhere. But for the one who says, “To heck with you — I got mine,” there are a hundred, a thousand who will say, “Sure, pal, sit down.”

I know that despite all warnings against hitchhikers I can step up to the highway, thumb for a ride and in a few minutes a car or a truck will stop and someone will say, “Climb in Mac — how far you going?”

I believe in my fellow citizens. Our headlines are splashed with crime yet for every criminal there are 10,000 honest, decent, kindly men. If it were not so, no child would live to grow up. Business could not go on from day to day. Decency is not news. doctor 300It is buried in the obituaries, but is a force stronger than crime. I believe in the patient gallantry of nurses and the tedious sacrifices of teachers. I believe in the unseen and unending fight against desperate odds that goes on quietly in almost every home in the land.

I believe in the honest craft of workmen. Take a look around you. There never were enough bosses to check up on all that work. From Independence Hall to the Grand Coulee Dam, these things were built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones.

I believe that almost all politicians are honest … there are hundreds of politicians, low paid or not paid at all, doing their level best without thanks or glory to make our system work. If this were not true we would never have gotten past the 13 colonies.

And finally, I believe in my whole race. Yellow, white, black, red, brown. In the honesty, courage, intelligence, durability, and goodness of the overwhelming majority of my brothers and sisters everywhere on this planet. I am proud to be a human being. I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth. That we always make it just by the skin of our teeth, but that we will always make it. Survive. Endure. I believe that this hairless embryo with the aching, oversize brain case and the opposable thumb, this animal barely up from the apes will endure. Will endure longer than his home planet — will spread out to the stars and beyond, carrying with him his honesty and his insatiable curiosity, his unlimited courage and his noble essential decency.

This I believe.

  • Robert A. Heinlein

I share Heinlein’s love of and belief in humanity. I believe the goodness in people far outweighs the challenging few who are reported upon in the news. I do not care what religion another person is or if they are atheist, agnostic, humanist, or any of the other faith or philosophic traditions about which I know nothing. People are inherently good because they are LOVE. Even the ones who actively reject or resist this Truth are still LOVE at their core. This is the stuff of which we are all made. It is the Life Force itself. hands heart

Humans are now and will always be filled with Light; otherwise they could not inhabit these earthly bodies. Yes, we may always do battle with one another, at least until we learn to rise above our ego-based belief in separateness, but, one by one, we are learning the Truth of who and what we are. Each one of us, upon obtaining this Awareness, realizes we no longer entertain any thoughts of harming another.

I truly believe that this is the direction in which the human race is evolving. I know, at the very least, that I and most of my friends have dedicated our lives to helping us all move in that direction. In the meantime, I would like to suggest that we each spend more energy looking for the Light in one another instead of focusing on the lower energies. Together we will call a kinder and gentler humanity into existence.

Surrender Your Mind to God; Your Heart Already Has

A short time ago, I read this passage on the website referenced below:

Allah says in the Quran: “And if any one puts his trust in Allah, sufficient is (Allah) for him. For Allah will surely accomplish his purpose. Verily, for all things has Allah appointed a due proportion” (Surah Al-Talaq, verses 3)

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “If only you relied on Allah prayer in the mosquea true reliance, He would provide sustenance for you just as He does the birds: They fly out in the morning empty and return in the afternoon with full stomachs. (Ahmad, An-Nasa’I, Ibn Majah, Al-Hakim and At-Tirmidhi)

Source: http://productivemuslim.com/18-sources-of-barakah/#ixzz3Y4K7hokW

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And it made me immediately think of Luke 12:27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.” (NIV)

Every faith tradition, at least every one I have spent any time with, teaches us that we need only surrender to our God, just like nature demonstrates, and all will be well in our world. Consider these words found in the Gleanings
From the Writings of Baha’u’llah, Pages 308-312: gr8 : “Aid me, O my Lord, to surrender myself wholly to Thy Will, and to arise and serve Thee, for I cherish this earthly life for no other purpose than to compass the Tabernacle ...”temple-baha'i

I honestly think that with just a little effort I could list examples from all the world’s legitimate spiritual traditions in which the message is abundantly clear: “Surrender of the ego’s will to the Will of the Divine is a necessity in order to dwell in peace.” Of course this last statement is my paraphrase of this Truth, but I think you get the idea.

The beauty about surrender is that there is nothing to be angry or upset about when we stop resisting “what is” in acquiescence to the desires of our Higher Power, whatever or whomever that may be. This is an exceptionally peaceful way of living ones life.

I will close, today, with these words from A Course in Miracles, Book 1, Chapter 8, IV: “The Gift of Freedom, 1) If God’s Will for you is complete peace and joy, unless you experience only this you must be refusing to acknowledge His Will. His Will does not vacillate, being changeless forever. When you are not at peace it can only be because you do not believe you are in Him. Yet He is All in all. believeHis peace is complete, and you must be included in it. His laws govern you because they govern everything. You cannot exempt yourself from His laws, although you can disobey them. Yet if you do, and only if you do, you will feel lonely and helpless, because you are denying yourself everything.”

Simply do this: Stop resisting life. Stop fighting ‘what is.’ Move in the direction of your dreams. Share the gifts and talents, which fill you with joy, in every way you can imagine, but move like the stream which takes the path of least resistance. Flow with life, and peace shall be yours. If you practice a religion, surrender to your God every aspect of your existence. Life will, once again, become play and your days shall be filled with Joy, for peace is always accompanied by ecstatic joy.