My Source for Everything

Previously, I’ve talked about my source in my life. I’m feeling it all the time now, so I thought I’d give you an update. Today only, I found the following things that showed up in my life in about a period of 15 minutes, which included  a short trip around where I live.

spiders on door

spiders on recently painted door

I walked out and found my door greeters, several very small spiders. Thank you friends.

Where I live it is very dry this summer and about the only thing with color today is this flower.  You all know it. Most of the time we spray it in our grass. I’m celebrating the dandelion today.

dandelion

Today’s dandelion

In my own home, last Thursday from my Zen Group my lay leader offered me the flowers we had used on the altar that evening.  These are beautiful Black-eyed Susans.

black-eyed Susans

Black-eyed Susans

I have always have loved these flowers, so I couldn’t leave them out.

“Truth is a deep kindness that teaches us to be content in our everyday life and share with the people the same happiness.”  – Khalil Gibran

In my short walk, I found small pine cones that caught my fancy. I am thankful for them as I live around many pines, and those pines feed my soul.

pine cone

pine cone

Another thing I found in my house was a sand dollar. This is a special sand dollar to me.

sand dollar

sand dollar from a friend

A good friend gave me this sand dollar. She found it on a California beach. After nearly a year, it still has a little sand it. You can see a little pile of it at the top of the dollar.  I decorate my home altar with this sand dollar. Friendships and family have been some of the greatest joys in my life.

shade

shade

I have learned to be thankful for trees and the shade they provide, particularly in the summer. I used to live in the South, and I learned to really love shade there. I like to take walks, so this summer, I have been picking many of the shady streets.

chair

chair where I write – with duct tape on back support

This was the last thing that showed up in my apartment. On the chair where I work, I have a back support gadget that I hook onto the chair. I leave the support on it all the time. Today, it fell off my chair, and I had to fix it with duct tape. This back support used to be in my car until a part on it sheered during a car wreck I had the end of March 2014. Three weeks after the wreck, I realized my source had protected me from certain death. I was side swiped by a truck that had pulled into my lane while I was driving in the rain. Other than this back support, I only lost my rear view mirror on the right side. (I also needed months of therapy.)

car after wreck

right side after mirror was sheered in wreck

Repairing the back support today was a reminder to me to always be grateful to be alive with every breath I take.

I used to hate the words to “Every Breath You Take” by the Police. I used to think it was as a song about a stalker. Today I just think it is a song about my source taking care of me, and I love the song now! Take a listen.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMOGaugKpzs

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Standing Together

I feel really happy when I am a part of something where people are working together and collaborating for the purpose of a common goal. I call that “Standing Together”.

trees connected

trees standing together

For us humans when I have worked together on worthwhile projects to see them come to fruition, it has warmed my heart. I first experienced this years ago working with an organization I volunteered with.  I felt elated when we succeeded in the goal. Even though separately each one of us was not always “perfect” in what we said and did. The goal had a higher purpose and that goal required me to stretch to my better self.

“It is when we start working together that the real healing takes place…it’s when we start spilling our sweat and not our blood.”  David Hume (18th Century English philosopher)

leaning trees

leaning trees standing together

Most recently I was inspired by the  Pluto fly by project. I was blown away that pictures of Pluto were sent from three BILLION miles away back to earth. The fact that frozen Pluto has a “heart” on it says something beautiful to me. That project was accomplished by working together, standing together. If you wish to see more than just a few photos here is a very good brand new NOVA project called “Chasing Pluto”. 1. Go to http://www.pbs.org

2.  Choose NOVA or type in: video.pbs.org/video/2365527017/

The most inspiring  example of humanity working together and collaborating from all backgrounds in my lifetime was the American Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Since I lived on the west coast at that time, I only experienced blatant racism from TV pictures as a young teenager. However, I also found out that the small town where I lived in California in the 1960s blatantly and legally barred African Americans from living within the city limits.  As I have aged, I have learned how inspiring the Civil Rights Movement was for all of humanity and how brilliant and great Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was and still is. I am still inspired by what he wrote, spoke, and how he lived.

“Now we have black and white elected officials working together. Today we have gone beyond just passing laws. Now we have to create a sense that we are one community, one family. Really we are the American family.”   John Lewis

John Lewis would understand this because he was a part of the Civil Rights Movement. The rest of us need to get this, as problems are exposed of institutionalized racism in American police forces everywhere, in our prison system everywhere, and by individuals who have murdered in Charleston, South Carolina. Now we CANNOT be  in denial any more.  All of us of all colors need to understand that you and I still have work to do. Standing together, I believe in us. You and I have to believe in ourselves, care, and be willing to do something positive and life affirming about the racism  that still persists in our beautiful country.

This is how universal the anthem sung during and after the Civil Rights Movement has become on our planet:

more trees standing together

more trees standing together

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bumper Sticker Philosophers

When I have to sit in traffic behind someone or am in a parking lot and I see a bumper sticker I like, it can change my mood and give me pause to think. I like bumper stickers like that, and I thank the philosophers who put them on their cars.

Bumper sticker 1

Bumper Sticker 1

I “loved” these two bumper stickers because they state basic values that make sense. Living them in our daily lives is a greater challenge. It is always good to have a reminder to be our better selves.

Where I live there are farmers and farmer’s markets close by. I am very fortunate to have access to high quality food. Therefore, these two bumper stickers say it all.

bumper sticker 2

Bumper Sticker 2

bumper sticker 3

Bumper Sticker 3

This bumper sticker is referring to the GMOs that Monsanto Corporation puts in the seeds they sell. Several states in the USA are trying to require labeling of GMOs because we still do not know for sure if they make humans sick or not.  Seeds that have been genetically modified do require more toxic spraying-yuck!

bumper sticker 4

Bumper Sticker 4

I liked this one because it is mysterious and astronomical with a touch of spirituality. This one makes me scratch my head and wonder.

bumper sticker 5

Bumper Sticker 5
Question the Answers

This bumper sticker is a little out of focus and says “Question the Answers”. When I googled “Bumper stickers and TED talks” I got this AMAZING TEDX talk that made me question whether I ever want to use another TED talk for this blog. It is also a good example of “Question the Answers”. Check it out. Benjamin Bratton  is a philosopher and designer who has questioned what we are doing with TED!  TEDX talk appears at the end of the article.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/shana-ting-lipton/benjamin-bratton-ted_b_4531802.html

bumper sticker 6

Bumper Sticker 6

I love the song “Imagine” from John Lennon. I sang it with the first Japanese students in the USA that I ever taught before I became a teacher professionally. I love the words of the song anyway. I chose this to be the one “peace” bumper sticker in this blog.

bumper sticker 7

Bumper Sticker 7

This is was the last bumper sticker I took a photo of. The car was in a parking lot. I talked to the owner of the truck that it was on and thanked her. This is one of my favorite messages- if we could only get it and live it!

My thanks to all of the bumper sticker philosophers! I’ll be happy to continue driving behind all of you!

 

 

 

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Mind My/Your Own Business

“Mind your own business” does not mean I don’t care about others. I do. For me it is not a way of avoiding getting involved with people, and “mind your own business” is a way for me not to be so focused on others. I have had the propensity to pay more attention to other people’s lives than my own. I’ve spent much of my life focused on other’s needs and sometimes forgotten my own. Also I used to,  way too often, get into other people’s business when I was not asked for advice.

mail boxes

Other people’s mail boxes

I wouldn’t get into other people’s mail boxes, but as a “helper” type of person, I had the audacity to think that I could get into other’s business. I became unconscious of this habit. I had bought into the habit of “helping” family members and others without asking them. As a nation with reality shows, and anything to do with entertainment, we Americans seem to get into every one else’s business a lot and think it is OK to do that, too. That does not excuse me.

sign

self explanatory sign

I’ve started obeying the above sign and acting like other people’s lives are not my business. Initially it was a bit embarrassing to notice my nosey habit. Over the last year, I have been learning to take care of my own business better. I’ve been working on asking people if they want my help and/or advice. Mind you it is an effort! I’m not great at this, yet. For those of you with this issue, here are some quotes you might like to view.

http://www.searchquotes.com/search/Mind_Your_Own_Business/

The upside to owning this habit and working on changing it is: I’m enjoying nature more; I’m less of a pain in the butt to friends and family, i.e. my relationships are improving. I’m beginning to learn what I feel about things. I am learning why I have done certain things and my motivations. For instance, why I became a teacher and why I love being around and supporting children and teens. I am owning my likes and dislikes. I am standing up better for myself. I am asking questions more (not allowed in my FOO (family of origin)). I’m learning that I do not need to be run raged by MY expectations of others. I am learning more self acceptance.  All of these new ways of learning and being are what I mean by “minding my own business”.

Warning: You may start notice how prevalent it is that others are NOT minding their own business- but that is not YOUR business or mine.

sign 2

Reminder sign

This sign reminds me to stop and think first and ask myself:

Is this my business? Or will this “business” affect MY life or freedom? Did this person ask for my input?

My last thought on “Mind your own business” is that it is not a rude saying. If I say it to myself, it is a way to remind myself to respect myself and others.

 

 

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Love is Love

light on Spencer's Butte

My Source

My Source is loving. It brings love and light to this world. I believe the open, loving heart is what my source wants for all of us. Love expands me and gives all of us new possibilities.

“We are born to love.  Love is our mother.”   – Rumi

heart from necklace

The open, loving heart

Looking back history through, I ruminate and see where love overcame adversity or hate.

*     When slavery ended after the Civil War after years of the bloodiest war this country has ever known, love conquered hate. Humanity won. Slavery was a crime against humanity. I feel we Americans have still not talked about even this war, and there is still residue from it.

*   The 13th, 14th, and 15 Amendments to the Constitution assured slavery would end, and the rights and privileges for all Americans, no matter what race they were should be granted.

*  The 19th Amendment to the Constitution granted women the right to vote in

*     When the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and 1968 as well as the Voting Rights Act of 1965 ended discrimination of ALL people of color in the USA. Love and humanity in this country expanded for all.

*    The U. S. Supreme Court made interracial marriage legal everywhere in the USA on June 12, 1967 with the Loving vs Virginia case.

*    The U. S. Supreme Court made marriage possible for LGBT people June 26, 2015.

In every case, I feel love has reigned supreme. Humanity in this country was trying to take a step forward. There were also periods of resistance, when those who did not agree with the Amendments balked from the law of the land. The Jim Crow Laws in the South and elsewhere practically negated the 13th, 14th and 15 Amendments for a years.   Change is challenging.

dogwood flowers

Dogwood flowers

I wish for my heart to remain open like the Dogwood flower. I wish for my heart to continue to embrace all people.  Do I have a right to tell another human being who he or she should love? That is very personal. I feel that is NOT my RIGHT. I would be infringing on another person’s personal freedom if I dictate to him/her the most personal thing in his/her life. Besides, is that person personally hurting or injuring me by what he/she feels and who he/she loves? NO. I do NOT know what is in another person’s heart. They love who they love. I feel it is NOT my business to interfere with who they love.

Who am I to judge what they feel and experience?

 

 

 

 

 

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