Wednesday, May 28, 2008

You can't help someone get up a hill without getting closer to the top yourself.
-- H. Norman Schwarzkopf

I was taught, early on, that it is imperative to help others - those who feel "lost," (even though we all live on this spinning orb and can't be or get "lost" there are times we certainly feel that way) and those with a sense of purpose or have a goal to reach. In the last some years I wondered how it could be that i put my "plans" on hold to help another person, only to find they maneuvered on the "drowning man" theory of living. Yikers! It would seem everything - life as I knew it - was destroyed. So, the goal, of lesson, for me would be to remember my teaching, right? Nothing CREATED can possibly be destroyed AND "Divine Providence down to the details."

It's a good thing to contemplate right now, since we are exploring this very topic at our next "Evening Lights." I have come to believe there's a better, higher plan going on. If MY plans had continued on as they were, I would not be enjoying the learning I am now embarked upon (isn't THAT fancy language for, I wouldn't have tried anything else and would have lived out my days like a kindergartner of life experience, instead to grabbing hold of all I could be . . . giggle)

So, I send a warning, red alert, helping others will have consequences and, whether or not we understand it, it will all be GOOD.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Splendid Guests

Thank You!


Instead of giving a politician the keys to the city, it might be better to change the locks.
-- Doug Larson

72 Days

God Bless China
Fill Us All With Light

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Speaking of Faith

It's a PBS Program I listen to on the way to work.
This morning I heard a prayer I loved so much I had to capture it for sharing.

Sahanaa Vavatu
Om Saha Naavavatu Saha Nau Bhunaktu
Saha Veeryam Karavaavahai.
Tejasvi Naavadheetamastu
Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih.
May the Lord protect us together.
May he nourish us together.
May we work together uniting our strength
for the good of humanity.
May our learning be luminous and
purposeful. May we never hate one another.
May there be peace, peace, and perfect peace.

Beautiful, yes?

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Gifts from my garden today.
Color me a Grateful Lady
Posted by Picasa

There is something special I enjoy about this poster. I picked it up at the music store today. Shortly I'll have to visit the website listed. The reason I brought it home to share with you has very little to do with sitars and music. It has to do with the ongoing conversation about labels, religious discipline and judgement calls. If you've visited many "new thought" centers, you realize they are called CENTERS because they are uncomfortable with the word "church." I don't want to argue about the words or meanings, just the labels. The same thing came up with me. I was consistently referred to by a "label" that makes me feel itchy. I thought, if I was true to mySelf, people would begin to realize their assessment needed re-examining. After a year, that did not happen. I tried a few, gentle ways to change their view. Finally I wanted it corrected so much I actually asked (privately) for a consideration of the situation.

SO, what has that to do with this poster? The quote:
". . . affiliated with no one faith and has combined many disparate disciplines into a unified movement of human potentiality and equipoise."
Isn't that fun?

Now, I'm off to visit the website listed.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Here's a fun site:

Here's the cover of her book, "Hungry Girl." That's the name of her site as well.
It's fun, you might want to visit.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


I was learning about the destruction of the second temple and how the people began to move towards Judaism as we know it. Professor Gafni is great at explaining things. Well, I heard the story about "Give me Yavne and all our wise men." I'm still a learner, so I had not, until today, heard of Yavne. When I googled it, I saw lots of wonderful things. The caption on this said it is from an art studio. It says "Habad" - so, it might be part of the Lubavitcher Program. It's beautiful, isn't it? It reminds me of my classmate, Shoshannah, who is an amazing, world class artist. I can picture her home looking like this - or even better, as people come to look at her art.
I love stories about Zusya - I'm still looking for a book about him. Right now i find stories, like tiny treasures that grow in my heart, from my teacher and from Buber . .

A man who lived in the same town as Rabbi Zusya saw that he was very poor. So each day he put twenty coins into the little bag in which Zusya kept his phylacteries, so that he and his family might buy the necessities of life. From that time on, the man grew richer and richer. The more he had, the more he gave Zusya, and the more he gave Zusya, the more he had.
But once he recalled that Zusya was the disciple of a great maggid, and it occurred to him that if what he gave the disciple was so lavishly rewarded, he might become even more prosperous if he made presents to the master himself so he traveled to Mezritch and induced Rabbi Baer to accept a substantial gift from him. From this time on, his means shrank until he had lost all the profits he had made during the more fortunate period. He took his trouble to Rabbi Zusya, told him the whole story, and asked him what his present predicament was due to. For had not the rabbi himself told him that his master was immeasurably greater than he?
Zusya replied: "Look! As long as you gave and did not bother to whom, whether to Zusya or another, God gave to you and did not bother to whom. But when you began to seek out especially noble and distinguished recipients, God did exactly the same."

People mourn for the dead in the earthquake which jolted Wenchuan County of Sichuan province on Monday during the launching ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay in Ruijin, southeast China's Jiangxi Province, on May 14, 2008.

(Photo credit: Song Zhenping/Xinhua)

Following the Light. People are using the gatherings to donate, to reflect, to help, to hope . . .
I see the LOVE behind it all. I am entirely Grateful.
Choose the life that is most useful, and habit will make it the most agreeable.
- - - Sir Francis Bacon

Study and Learn, Learn and Do, the plan is to Become what God Intends for me -
I'm told that's our greatest challenge, to BE the Idea God had - to Live Our Own Lives and not the one others define for us . . . . It seems that would be the best, most fun, doesn't it? being the one of a kind creation God planned for us? If that's true, why then the fascination with others, especially pop culture idols - why then even bother to dress and/or look like them? It seems there's an entire system built on a trick, an illusion, when the Actual Plan is so much more beautiful and fun . . . this gives me stuff to think about all morning.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

This image is from The Bubble

There seems to be so much going on.
It's no use even wasting the energy it takes to turn on the television.
Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Cyclones
Arguh! THAT'S a discussion that bothers me.
Do you think people are talking, because it's about to happen and they would like their ten minutes of fame it that way?
How would you like it, if the world agreed there should be a party, and it was presented as a great honor for it to be at your house
Many, MANY people promised to come and celebrate with you and they would pay their own way, to help you pay for this larger than life event.
Then, right as the formal invitations go out,
people protest, public voices cry out that you are unworthy, your looks, behavior, style of life,
countless things about you seem unacceptable, and, instead of graciously either
1. attending the event and taking time to get to know you better, or maybe even becoming your friend
2. graciously declining, and allowing others to enjoy the party

You begin to criticise
and tell the world community it's a bad thing
who,exactly will be making sure you aren't hurt by this super nice thing you tried to offer the world????

I am sad at all this.
I, personally, would like to see more of the beauty,
this is a different, awesome culture
they have much to offer
if we could become friends, perhaps we'll find things we have in common
things we'd like to share.
Can't we say, "I'd love to attend the party,
what may i bring?"

And, if we don't need to bring the pickles,
how about packing some Love, Light , Life,
Joy, Spirit.
How about bringing some of the beautiful things, some of the Qualities of Spirit, to share and leave behind. Perhaps we'll find that Love is Catchy.

We could try.

Little Kitty in a Pot - Making Us Happy By Being ItSelf
May I learn to do the same

Monday, May 12, 2008

If one speaks or acts with a cruel mind, misery follows, as the cart follows the horse... If one speaks or acts with a pure mind, happiness follows, as a shadow follows its source.
-- the Dhammapada

Ay-Yi-Yi. The first thing is that there are so many Huge Issues in the world - that it's clear my only correct response is prayer and thanksgiving. Students in God's Care in China because of a huge earthquake, Winds causing damage, Tornadoes taking people, Cyclone causing anguish and aid workers still begging that government for permission to come give needed help - all of this makes my small issue - minuscule. Maybe, not speaking at all will bring that promised shadow and following shadow - what do you think?

I am slightly confused by people thinking that - if they are hires - they may define the position and do/act as they please . . . . confusing . . . odd . . . I'm thinking of of Tom Morgan and the poem he sent me before leaving forever . . . "I'll keep on loving, and I'll smile, and move along."

Continue to Love
Move Along.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

My Reward

Normally one doesn't expect anything for a good deed. But, I got one anyway. The original is white with red print. I decided to play with it - so now it looks old fashioned. I used to produce regular Food Drive Concerts. It wasn't as rewarding as I hoped it might be. It got more negative attention than it did goo. So, I packed it in. But, the travel agency in town was sponsoring a drive. I got to stop at the world market and purchase what i could afford to help fill the barrel. Then, the post office had a food drive yesterday. A friend took me to the grocery and we both filled a couple bags, hanging them on the post for Jerry (my favorite mail carrier of all time.) He didn't have opportunity to stop by until very late in the afternoon but, when I heard the slam of a car door, i realized he'd gone for his van. And, in place of the bags meant to help someone else - I was given this super cool post card. A TROPHY!!!!!! (of sorts.) I may glue it into a scrap book, because it really is happy making to take part (mine seemed to be the only mailbox in the neighborhood loaded down with groceries . . hm . . . how can we encourage others to participate? OR - How can I help the planet overcome poverty and need? Interesting. Have you read anything by Yunus? He certainly has good ideas about that. Well, now I've give you a glimpse of my prize, I think I'll be off.
'bye for now!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

There's the country of America, which you have to defend, but there's also the idea of America. America is more than just a country, it's an idea. An idea that's supposed to be contagious.
- - - Bono

I read good things about this artist (Bono.) I hope, in some small way I make a difference, too.
This quote makes me think about Heaven. Now, Heaven isn't supposed to be just an idea or ideal. It's supposed to be a quality of Living - Here & Now. I wonder if I offer that to people around me? I experience IT in small snippets now. It's actually my HOME and my Truth. Now, how do I stay "Homebound" and maintain balance . . . . Maybe it doesn't need a balancing act. Maybe it's a choice - never to be backed away from. Ooooh, the thought is still too big for me . . . darn. I keep coming back to explore the idea - then I remember it isn't an idea - it's my home.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

If it is once again one against forty-eight, then I am very sorry for the forty-eight.
- - - Margaret Thatcher

Me & G-d - a majority. There are so many stories, why would anyone doubt this?

Yesterday i got to meet with my "sister" - my "hevruta" (study partner.) She is here all the way from New Jersey. She is as beautiful in person as she is in Spirit. I caught a bus very early in the morning and in a little over an hour I was within walking distance of her hotel. Here's the funny thing. She called my home to let me know she was up. Well, I wasn't AT home. When I called, she thought I was simply returning her message but, NOPE (oh how fun) I was in the lobby, with a book, in case she needed more time - I was right there, to visit with her. She is as empowering as i ever hope to be. In her presence, a person would know they could do anything.
She is Holy. Like a beaming angel. How blessed am I????
If you want to be respected, you must respect yourself.
-- Spanish Proverb

It isn't "like me" to dwell on past accomplishments. So I'm certain it's G-d reminding me where we (G-d & I) have been together. heck, I was on the A&M label, an opportunity earned, not given. I've self-produced several CDs and assisted others to do the same. I've done music for two independent films, I've helped a project that went on to win an Emmy. Not to mention all the events I've produced and either hosted, or performed . . . . storytimes, concerts, author presentations - and that's merely the tip of the years of creative work . . . I'm in a program now (that I LOVE) that is a real confidence builder. Why wait until graduation to go back to work. No need to continue to wonder. I think it's part of the "Happy Surprise" - this finding mySelf looking to self-define and offer my talents to the community. Yes, Spirit is reminding me that, with G-D "All Things Are Possible." I should respect mySELF (the G-D part) and "get out there."
Creativity can solve almost any problem. The creative act, the defeat of habit by originality, overcomes everything.
-- George Lois

This is where my mind is this morning. I'm beginning to work on ways to get mySelf back "out there.' It's past time for me to be working, as mySelf again. I figure it's time for me to dust off my knees and start making my own way once again. Yep, I've had some challenges, but, what the heck, I'm here - so there must be plenty for me to do. Now, where to start? G-d knows and is telling me right now.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Faith Based, Inspirational Tellers?

I was disappointed. Now, don't get me wrong, it's a great thing, this story festival. It's a great and wonderful gift to the city. My misadventure was one small part and, to be truthful, it seemed (at the time) I was the only person sad. It took me planning, two buses, a little stroll across Soulard - but, what's that? I was really excited to hear other "Sacred Storytellers." I was met at the entrance to the venue by the nicest person I've met in months. he explained the event was moved to a nice place about a block and a half away. No Problem. My disappointment came when the tellers announced that the "low life's" had been scheduled there. (I'm not sure about this, it might have been an inside joke, referring to a type of story, anything is possible.) It was decided by the tellers to tell "family friendly" stories the first round, and then - something for adults the second round. So, no "Sacred, Faith or Inspirational." event was going to happen, I guess it was because, if it isn't in a church???? But, I don't know. There was/is a teller who inspired me (Jim Two Crows from Independence, MO - Totally Awesome.) There was one teller, a local favorite, who shared from his scary collection (scary is the most innocent word I can find to let you know it was dark . . DARK.) I stayed through the second round, the family stories were delightful, then, the same teller decided to share another - I needed to leave - I would be more comfortable waiting an extra bit of time at the bus stop than listen to . . . . . well, never mind, I'm certainly not going to dwell on it any longer.

BUT - tomorrow night is the final concert. The keynote tellers will be there presenting. It will be "Best Of Show." I'm certain there will be plenty to inspire, lift, encourage and delight.
I'll report back.

Temple of Heaven

I hope the link works for you.
There's a 360 view of the Temple Of Heaven.
97 days - then, not only the Olympic Spirit will take hold, but we'll have the treat of new views from the other side of the world. When you were a child did you think you could dig a hole, straight through the earth, and end up in China? Did you think it would feel like standing upside down when you got there? Won't it be wonderful to see some of the beautiful things they would like to show us?

I'm glad of this opportunity.
97 days - and counting.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Do not throw the arrow which will return against you.
-- Kurdish Proverb

I suppose the reason there are so many great quotes, that explain us to ourselves, is that we are all human. For me, I no longer think it's a good enough excuse. First, because I believe I am Spirit. No, really! I believe I was made in the image and likeness of the Creator ItSelf. That makes me a little portion of the whole, Spirit and Light. It's sad that I continue to catch mySelf behaving in limited ways. Yikers! This quote is unfortunately like how I've been so much of my life. The things that have come back to cause me concern, are all things I started. Now, isn't there an easy way to rise above and behave like the Who I Am???? if you know the answer to that, please send it along. And - don't think I'm just hanging around waiting for your comment, because it might take a while for you to read this blog. No, no, no. I'm working on this project daily. I believe it actually IS Heaven right here & now. So, I gotta clear my spirit goggles and SEE the Truth and Behave accordingly. Well, it's me - off to try once again. Leaving the "arrows" at home today and hoping I'll think forty-seven times before I ever use one again.
Read, every day, something no one else is reading. Think, every day, something no one else is thinking. Do, every day, something no one else would be silly enough to do. It is bad for the mind to be always part of unanimity.
-- Christopher Morley

Wasn't it the Red Queen who said she likes to think several impossible things before breakfast every day? That's me. Deeply desiring to find Truth and Freedom. Thinking "outside the box" is how people used to commonly say it, except they often meant to think in a way to raise a dollar. Me, I'd like to raise consciousness - I'd like to find mySelf smack in the lap of G-D. Well, I'll leave this for now.

Well, one more thing. Remember the Saint Louis Storytelling Festival is going on RIGHT NOW.
Choose an event and enjoy yourself. It's all free to the public - and, it's just about everywhere.

If you haven't the link . . here goes: - I'll see you there, I suppose.