Thursday, July 31

“I’m Ready!” “No, you aren’t”

Don’t confuse being ready with wanting to be ready. It’s one thing to be standing at the starting line about to run the race, and it’s quite another to be at home having just decided you want to run a race.

Saying you’re ready doesn’t make you ready, even if you say it over and over.

Sitting on a couch saying “I’m ready to run” when you haven’t even purchased proper shoes doesn’t make you ready. It doesn’t matter how much you believe it. The actions you take after the decision are what make you ready.

Sometimes the action is just getting off your ass, depending on what you are feeling ready to do, but until you actually act on being ready, you are only still wanting to be ready.

It might sound like I’m saying, much preparation is required in being ready for something… No, not necessarily. Depends on what you are wanting to do. If you want to climb Everest, you have a lot of preparation. If you want to be learning something so you can use it in life, you only have to open a book. What you need to remember if your goal is to learn something, getting the book is one thing, OPENING the book and reading it is another. Once you’ve read it, you are ready to use it.

Many of us want to run the race and want to be ready for the race, so lets get some shoes, lets get some miles in… lets do more than just want!

Tuesday, July 29

What’s up with sharing?

You go to a restaurant, you order an appetizer, it arrives and tastes like heaven. You are freaking out over the amazingness of your dish, and what is it you want to do next? You want to SHARE!
”Taste this! Can you believe how smooth and creamy? Have more!”
Whenever something is wonderful to us, we want to share it.

I feel this with sunsets, with laughing, with a good movie, with MUSIC!! I feel a desire to share lovely and beautiful things to the extent that when I don’t have anyone to share with, it’s like the thing, isn’t real. 

If I have nobody to also taste, hear, see or smell this great thing, it kinda becomes less real. Now I’m not saying it isn’t real… what I’m saying is how much MORE REAL the thing is when you have someone to also taste, hear, see or smell that lovely thing too… you get to look at one another and nod, smiling, and then be exuberant WITH. Those parts make it feel more real, more amazing, more fun, and a life without anyone to share it… is less.

We have all experienced it with fb. People share everything, yes often out of a need for validation, (which isn’t a bad thing), but mainly out of a desire to not just experrience the thing alone.

I had a hummingbird fly into my back window, the 1 hour ordeal of waking him up, holding him and stroking him back to life was such an interesting experience for me, I wanted to share it with those I knew on fb…  AND when others share their cool things with me, I get to have MY life enlightened by them!

I know this isn’t really going anywhere, but I just wanted to SHARE, that I see the importance in SHARING, and I love having someone to share WITH!

Love, peace, and joy to you. 

Thursday, July 24

Bangs & Pops

I’m supposed to start work in less than 6 hours, and the thing stopping me from sleep is the continual fireworks outside on this state holiday.

When the bangs and pops started I was at a friends house, and the children outside ran screaming to stand where they could see the bright sparks in the sky.

On the other side of the planet, also this month, people are listening to the exact sounds and bangs, children there are screaming too, but not in excitement. The difference is here the sounds are harmless and full of color, and there, each bang is harmful and full of murder.

In the most densely populated place on the planet, walled in with nowhere to go, people are being attacked. They are attacked on a regular basis, but the world is so used to hearing about it that the continual deaths from bombs and artillery are something “westerners” ignore.

I lay here wondering what it would feel like for each pop and bang outside to be coming in contact with homes and apartments. We would be freaking out. We’d be freaking out even more if we had no military, no defense, and our children were dying in the attacks. “Will my family be hit next?” would be the overwhelming fear every second.

I have many friends sharing images from the other side of the world, some who live there, and some who like me just have friends there. They don’t live in anything remotely close to free or peaceful. Which is essentially what all the fireworks outside my house ARE about.

For one country to occupy another, and for the occupier to be murdering the occupied, free countries such as the one we live in should not be standing holding hands and supplying money and arms to the murders. And yet, this is precisely what “we” are doing.

The reality is we are not educated in the awfulness, we don’t go out of our way to learn about the abhorrent situation, and the abhorrent ways of these “occupiers”.

I don’t even have to name the countries, and you likely already know who I speak of. If you don’t, you could take information I’ve said here, search it, and you would land right in the thick of what I’m speaking about.

I’m now going to say the only thing I can, in my hope for change.

Pray for the weakness of evil, and the Strength of Goodness.
There is no picture for this post, I've seen too many images that don't bear sharing, and an image shouldn't make you care more.

Monday, July 21

Using your Wings

I have a friend who is like my guru. She says the stuff I need to hear, and over the years she has helped me figure myself out more than anyone ever has. She just says the right stuff at the right time, handing over understanding. It’s incredible, and makes me hope everyone has a guru.

She is my spiritual teacher and my guide without even trying to be. She’s just herself.
An interesting side note, she’s one of the smallest people I know, and one of the most soft spoken. She doesn’t seem to accept how incredible she is, and maybe she’s not playing an important role in many lives beyond mine. What I do know, is that I need to hear the things she says.

One of the things she said recently that was perfectly accurate for many of us and our lives; was her analogy of having wings.

What she said was not to me, but I sat there listening and felt it was so perfectly accurate for many people. I don’t want to forget it.

We can forever wish to be capable of flying, soaring, and owning the skies. We sometimes sit and watch others soar, and we say “I wish that were me”. Either we are afraid to fly, we don’t believe we are a bird, or somebody told us flying was impossible and we believed them.

Often you know you are a bird, but saying “I wish I had wings”.

What will it take for you to fly? At what point are you going to look down and accept you too could be soaring through white clouds and blue skies if you just took off?

Does it take another bird to come along and land next to you and point out you have wings? And does their pointing it out mean you will be able to suddenly fly? Will this one comment from a strange bird mean you can ignore the birds who have been telling you for years you aren’t capable of flying?  If you insist on ignoring your instinct, if you insist you don’t have wings, if you just sit there believing you aren’t a bird, you are choosing not to fly.

At what age, what point, what event, what thing happening will you accept you can fly?

I would bet that others investing their thoughts into your worth are what stops you.

You are sitting there alone, look down, see you have wings, let your instinct kick in, and take off already!

Monday, July 14

Undoing the Effects of Conditional Unconditional Love

I was listening to some friends talk recently about how they have been ostracized in many ways by their families and friends because they decided to walk away from “religion” in all forms. The area where we live is largely one religion, which professes CHOICE to be paramount and necessary in THE PLAN provided by JESUS, but the overall attitude of one CHOOSING differently than what everyone else is TOLD to choose, is an UNACCEPTING one.

I listen to my friends talk of their struggles wanting to live however they want to, not being told who they are or how to live, they continually speak of the disappointment, and being made to feel guilty or wrong for wanting to make choices themselves.

The reason I’m even writing about this as something interesting to me is because my parents have not done this to me. I lost my enchantment with religion while I was still a “teen”, so I have not had it in my life for more years than I did have it. AND I have had the support of my parents for all those years since.

I can’t personally relate to my friends stories and experiences, I don’t know what that struggle feels like, so my perspective is one of awe. I’m amazed that people allow the important idea of religion to stop them from treating their loved ones the way their religion says they should treat everyone.

I listen to the “unwelcome” attitudes my friends have to deal with from the people that should care most about them in life, and I hear a predominant theme… that they are going to have to find ways to heal this realization of conditional love. They have to fix feeling shame for not wanting to be religious, guilt for living a different life, and blame throughout it all.

They are made to feel wrong, bad, unwelcome, and struggle to fully wrap their heads around the fact that they are good people despite how they are treated.

What’s amazing is these friends I’m talking about are the highest quality of people I get to associate with. These are incredible friends, with amazing integrity, beautiful hearts, and generous natures. I am totally mystified that their FAMILIES can’t see this, but I can. And no, it’s not only their families, its friends too, who don’t understand their choice to walk away from religion.

I know how incredibly lucky I am to have lived more than half my life without religion or religious friends, and family members that love me irrespective of the word religion and that sad conditional love it embodies for most.

I’m not writing this because I feel lucky however. I’m writing this because I don’t know how to heal my friends. I can tell them how beautiful and wonderful I find them, but until they feel ok with believing it themselves, (silencing the shame, guilt, and blame) they are living outside of a level of happiness they are more than worthy of having.

All perspective is about choosing to feel the way we do, but when we have outside influences by those who are family it’s harder to not listen, and to choose “I’m incredible, irrespective of your beliefs about religion or me”.

I’d like my friends to allow their hearts, minds, and eyes to see their amazingness, and revel in the fact they already are the type of friend they want to have. I adore them, I label them “my bests”, and I love them JUST THE WAY THEY ARE!!

Friday, July 4

Independence & Influence

I just took pictures of an amazing sunset, which apparently was the signal for the fireworks to start. My valley is still lit with residual sunlight, but irrespective of that, there are bangs and burst in the sky in all directions. I just drove home from my moms house, and as I entered my town from a slight height, I looked down on the explosions, too many to count.

I’m not a patriotic person, I can’t see any point in it. I don’t disrespect the past, but I don’t believe how it’s told, and I don’t need to have pride in something I was not involved in. Anyway….

I see these lights as an expression of a conversation I had with a friend yesterday, which hinged upon independence day not being about “patriotism and independence” for me as it is for most. For me, it’s more about the fact that most people get to be free from work and responsibility, able to enjoy family and friends for a day. And what a wonderful thing to celebrate and have fireworks for… enjoying the company of the people you care most about.  

I have also had conversation with this same friend over the last week about how in control we are of our feelings, and if we want to look at a negative thing as a negative thing, we are choosing to see it that way. I used the example of a strangers critical opinion vs a loved ones critical opinion. For me, a stranger criticizing me isn’t worth even a few minutes thought, compared to the criticism of someone who knows me well. And yet, what is the actual difference between the two? How I decide to feel about them. Yes one might be based on history and the other not, but I GET TO choose how I react or feel to said criticism. -ME.

So I actually get to react In-Dependent of what they say. [If I choose to.] The key is seeing that fact, and doing it. AND what has kind of hit me recently in regard to this, if I choose to not be affected in a negative way, and I choose the opposite, to kind of spit in the face of negativity and go for positivity, I get to influence how others react to me. (spitting is a poor metaphor, but you get me.)

I feel like what I’m saying is profound for me, and obvious for others… but it’s so profound to me that over the last two days, I have tested my ability to affect others around me with positivity, by not just being my usual jolly self, but actually trying to influence others to be in a good mood. Paying attention to my expression, my tone of voice, and my casual conversation. It’s been very interesting. I’ve already learned, that a consciously cheerful demeanor generates cheerful interaction. As I’ve said before, I work in a coffee shop, so I get to analyze people, their reactions, what’s acceptable and unacceptable to say, and I not only get to learn by doing, I get to learn by watching and listening to others.

So, my feelings and actions can be independent of others and how they are acting, but I can also influence others for good with my happiness -generating their happiness.

In the end, I sit here listening to countless fireworks, and saying Happy Independence Day, with a personal meaning of not being dependent on another for how I react or feel.
Do you see the irony?
*oooooh…. ahhhhh….*