Storms Keep Coming, Shelter Is Strong

Resurrection

These past months have been stormy and it seems I am not coming out of the rain yet.  My allergies put me through weeks of hell, then hit with the flu, now am on antibiotics for a bladder infection, am having one or two other issues as well.  The remaining time before Christmas will be spent going for tests and specialist consultations, OY!  I could be all pissed off at God, give up on anything changing, but how would that help me or anyone?  There is also the theology and understanding I have that this is not God doing this to me, but a result of being a physical being in a physical world, where there is decay. To blame God, be pissed at Him, to me makes no sense at all.  Be pissed at the entity, entities, energies of decay that have created this situation for humanity, all of us and other situations of pain etc.., that makes sense.  Yet, the anger is an important point because if the anger is bitterness long-lasting anger, not helpful.  If it’s righteous anger, Satan, I have held fast to the Covenant etc., you have no claim, I am going to overcome the storm, you do take steps to do so, that’s great.  I get thrown into these storms, true, but what’s important is what do I do?  What am I doing? 

Medically, I am going to be going for those tests etc.., logical and practical to do so. I also presented a wellness plan to my doctor which she approves of, and have already started substituting natural products for my meds. In January with my insurance Silver Sneakers benefit, I will have access to YMCA, Community Centers to participate in wellness and light exercise programs, which I will avail myself of.    Starting this month I will be going to a monthly Healing Circle at the nearby Buddhist Center, focusing on Christ as my anchor.   In addition, I have put together a proposal for an offer I received to potentially host my own online radio show, will send it on Monday.  For the blog, I’ll be posting mini-meditations, and intro seminar blog posts and then I will also in the store have full-length medications, seminars you can purchase in the store.   I keep thinking what scripture says that I can do all things through Christ, and I take that to heart.  What I have done in my meditation is to Consecrate the things that matter to me, my hopes and dreams to the Sacred Heart of Christ and Mary, that act of consecrating to the sacred, the holy, the divine is a strong anchor of positive flow and energy for my life, for navigating the storms, moving forward so I can be inspired, but also so I can inspire others, which is what brings me joy. 

Namaste, Shalom, and Amen                        

Who’s Running the Show?

The Italian news today had the tragic story of a disco that had a fire, and part of the problem was that the disco allowed may more people in that what the legal capacity was.  The other thing that struck me was that there were some moms in there, one of which died with her daughter, with their 13, 14-year-old kids.  My heart goes out to these people, but at the same time I have to ask:  “Where were the adults in the room?”  How did we get to the point in society that a mom is in an overcrowded disco with their underage kid drinking alcohol?  Where is the authority of parents in our society? I am reminded of these parents who have decided that their kids at 6 years old know that the gender God made them in is not their gender, and start dressing them that way, prepare them for the transition.  I have to ask:  “Where are the sane adults in the room who understand there is a deep psych disconnect going on there, a dysphoria, an illness and patting the child on the back is not wise or loving parenting, nor mature parenting.  Seems that rather than the parents having the authority etc.., and them running the household, the kids do these days.  That’s not the way it’s organized by God and nature.   Parents had better start being parents, waking up and taking control in society, and also realizing the damage academia and other free for all institutions are doing to our youth.  If you truly love someone, you understand that tough love is part of the deal, you dish out when needed and if they don’t like it, don’t for a while, suck it up!  Get a backbone, get a spine, don’t be a snowfkake, this to shall pass.  Meraki Lane gives some great advice on this and she talks about consequence vs punishment, which I like and makes sense to me.  She talks about creative consequences so I want share that with you and hope it helps in giving you an idea if you are a parent in how to handle discipline.

She talks about what to do when a child is behaving badly:

  • Ignore bad behavior. If your child is engaging in undesirable behavior that isn’t dangerous or harmful to himself or others, ignore it. Do not engage him and avoid eye contact until he stops the behavior in favor of something more acceptable, at which time you should offer praise and positive interaction.
  • Use praise and rewards. Taking the time to point out and praise or reward your child when he behaves appropriately not only boosts his self-esteem, but it also teaches him what your expectations are and makes him more motivated to seek our desirable instead of undesirable behaviors.
  • Be consistent and follow through. In order for consequences to work, you must resist the urge to intervene and always follow through.

Also, consider why they are behaving this way, try to understand why and when determining consequence to actions consider the following:

  • Use the Three R’s of Logical Consequences. In order to be effective, logical consequences should be:
    • Relevant. In order for your child to make a connection between the behavior and the consequence, it’s important that the 2 are tied closely together. For example, implementing additional study time after school when a child receives a bad grade on a test is a reasonable consequence that directly corresponds with the behavior you are trying to change. Taking away a child’s TV privileges for a month due to a poor grade is not.
    • Realistic. Consequences should also be reasonable. In the example above, implementing an additional 30-60 minutes of homework each evening and/or hiring a tutor after receiving a bad grade is realistic, but taking away all of a child’s privileges and expecting her to spend 6 hours a night studying is over the top.
    • Respectful. Logical consequences are designed to provide your child with an opportunity to learn from her mistakes, not lower her self-esteem. Use simple, concise, factual language and avoid negative emotion so as not to embarrass your child and make her feel defensive.
  • Always follow through! As parents, we often hear about the importance of being consistent and following through with consequences. If you fail to follow through, your child won’t take you seriously, learn accountability, or figure out the difference between right and wrong.

Logical Consequences.  She talks about the fact that consequences need to be logical, connected, relevant and gives 13 logical consequences.

  1. Loss of privileges. This is an easy logical consequence to fall back on as it can be applied to so many different situations. If your child is throwing her toys or refusing to share with others, she loses the privilege of playing with them for the rest of the day. If your child throws a tantrum when you ask her to stop playing with her iPad, iPad time is reduced or removed for a period of time. If your child behaves badly during a playdate with her friends, the playdate is cut short and/or she’s not allowed to participate in a playdate the following weekend.
  2. Take a 10-minute break. When behavior gets out of control, a short break in which a child is quiet can help calm her down and help ground her. This doesn’t need to be as drastic as sending a child to her room or ordering her into a time out. Simply removing her from the activity she is participating in and asking her to sit quietly and read a book for 10 minutes can help restore a sense of calm without it feeling like a true form of punishment. Sometimes I like to turn it around and grant myself a 10-minute break when behaviors get out of hand!
  3. Additional household chores. If your child has a tendency to complain she’s bored or refuse to participate in activities, crafts, and games you organize on weekends and school holidays, a logical consequence would be to assign household chores (‘I’d like to do X, but if you don’t want to participate, the other option is to help me with Y.’).
  4. Removal of toys for a period of time. If your child constantly leaves her lying toys around the house, or refuses to clean her room when asked, put all toys that aren’t put away properly in a bin and take them away for an extended period of time.
  5. Time deducted from desirable tasks. If your child consistently argues with you about doing homework, dawdles in the morning, drags out her bedtime routine, etc., consider taking the additional time spent arguing about it away from more desirable tasks, like playing with friends and watching TV.
  6. Clean up your own messes. Have a child who enjoys making messes on purpose? Make her clean them up herself! You may have to go back and clean up properly when she’s not looking, but this logical consequence will make her realize her behavior isn’t as funny (or cute) as she originally thought.
  7. If you break it, you fix it. Kids love to play roughly with their toys, and sometimes they break them out of anger or frustration. It’s normal. But when you stop fixing their toys for them, they will soon learn to respect their belongings, and the belongings of others.
  8. Earlier bedtime. I love this logical consequence as I know firsthand that poor behavior is often a result of poor sleep habits. If this sounds familiar, consider moving up your child’s bedtime for each infraction throughout the day (i.e. for each tantrum your child throws, her bedtime is moved up by 15 minutes).
  9. Spend time with those they’ve hurt. If your kids exercise a healthy dose of sibling rivalry on the daily, or you learn your child has been mean to a classmate at school, a great logical consequence is to require them to spend more time with that person. This could mean a sleepover in their sibling’s room, a playdate with an ostracized classmate, etc.
  10. Ignore. When your child is talking out of turn, refuses to use manners, etc., don’t be afraid to ignore her until she starts speaking to you the way you expect. It may take some time for her to understand the reason you are doing this, and you may want to discuss this logical consequence beforehand, but it works like a charm!
  11. Enforce quiet time. If your child is yelling or speaking disrespectfully, a good (and peaceful!) logical consequence is to remove them from the situation for a bit of quiet time until they calm down and remember to use an indoor voice and appropriate language.
  12. Hands in your pocket! If your child struggles to keep her hands to herself, a great way to change her behavior is to require her to keep her hands in her pockets. You will need to provide an explanation about this logical consequence beforehand, especially if your child is prone to hitting, but it’s a great strategy to use in the moment to curb poor behavior.
  13. No work, no play. If your child refuses to do her chores, don’t be afraid to take away play time. Once your child makes the connection, she’ll act more appropriately.

 

I hope this helps and again I came across this blog and these tips from Meraki Lane and wanted to share them with you.   

Namaste, Shalom and Amen

 

 

 

 

We Are More Than …

Spiritual Being

As we celebrate Chanukah, Advent, Christmas, one of the goals should be to get back to this spiritual being we are and understanding this important perspective.  We can easily forget that we are a spirit being inhabiting a physical body.  Often, the two realities will clash, creating dis-ease and other issues.  One of the reasons I plan on joining the Buddhist Meditation circle weekly and special event healing circles at the Buddhist center, still centered in Christ, and pray the Anglican Rosary, and medicate daily is to remind myself of that in a deep way, release carnal baggage I may be carrying.  Especially in this Advent and Christmas Seasons, it is the perfect time to reflect and free yourself of baggage, to realize that we are spiritual beings living in a topsy-turvy physical existence and world.  How we choose to balance both sides, move through the world, with boundaries, morals, ethics, integrity or not is our choice, and any consequences, well we must then accept them.  My hope for Advent and Christmas, for my life, is that I truly get back to this and life can shift for the better.

Namaste, Shalom and Amen

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Life Lessons 44 and 45

45 life Lessons

Yielding is not easy since we have this thing called EGO and we want to be right, don’t want to look stupid or silly etc…Yet, what if not yielding, we end up actually looking that way, whereas if we had yielded, even just a bit, we would have been wise and looked wise before others, been an example of wise?  Bible says we perish for lack of knowledge, well part of that I am realizing is lacking knowledge, discernment and understanding when it comes to our own self-discipline, and how to navigate situations, relationships to know when to stand firm, not move, not budge, and when to say “is this such a priority that I am willing to have a war, that I have to be right?”  Meditating and studying sacred text is a way of reaching discernment, but so is the observation of life and people.  Seriously, if I had really paid attention to the world around me, looked at who has constructive patterns vs who had destructive ones and what are they, I would have looked at what successful, healthy relationships looked like in different aspect of life and what the pattern was when each yielded. Not saying I would do things exactly as others do since I am me, but I would have gained wisdom, maybe my life would look a bit different now.   Yielding at the right time, for the right reasons, once discerned is not a bad thing. 

When I was a kid one song that I used to listen to over and over was “I Never Promised You a Rose Garden” and the other was a song about love and it said that you didn’t know love until it chilled you to the bone, turned you inside out.  Life is like that, love can be like that, turn you inside out and upside down.  It may be for you or me more so than for others, to a different extent.  No one is immune from pain, though they may mask it, hide it, every one of us has had daggers thrown at us, some missed some hit.  Satan throws and if we have a strong constitution, strong faith etc.. we stand strong, stand tall, we may end up on our knees, we may bend, but we don’t break to the point of losing faith or knowing who we are.  Life is the ability to create, to do, impact and so much more, even with just a smile, the bounce in our voice, so no life doesn’t come all wrapped up in Christmas or other really pretty paper, but it is still a precious gift.  Even I have to remind myself of that each day in prayer, meditation, going out and seeing God’s creation, appreciating the seasons, the fact that I am alive and here, just here.  I hope you can appreciate that to. 

Namaste, Shalom and Amen

Gratitude Prompts, Living in the Light

25 Graditude Prompts

As we go through the holidays, it can be so easy to see what we lack, what is missing etc.., but Jesus said to be of good cheer, even in the midst of pain, be of good cheer for he overcame this world, he did so via gratitude, via prayer, connection to the Father, his Creator.  I can be all sad, stay sad about what I lack, any financial shortfalls, and believe me depending on government programs for your day to day sustenance can make anyone depressed.   I can be sad about nor having a life partner, a good man to share my life with, but then again, best to focus for a time now on getting healthy.  I have time for God to bring me into union with that person.  I can find stuff to frown about every day just by way of how messed up we humans are and the world is.  However, I can also do the opposite and go through the prompts each day, take two prompts. 

What makes me smile?  Children playing, smiling, being children is always a joy. Music, song, poetry makes me smile, as certain ones can bring back such great memories.  Writing, singing, teaching, they make me smile because I am touching spirits and hearts.  The beauty of nature, the complexities of nature showing the amazement that is God, our Creator, makes me smile.  These things all make me smile, so if I can think of these things then any darkness is pushed out, doesn’t mean I don’t resolve issues, but I choose to live my days grateful for the things that make me smile.  What makes you smile?  What do I love about myself? This question is not meant to be narcissistic, but rather be grateful for any gift, talent the Lord gave us.   What about myself am I grateful for?  My ability to be firm and fierce in my faith, general faith principles, have one hell of a debate, raunchy one even and then still be best friends.   Rather than beat myself up about immaturity in the past, I can instead focus on positive traits in the present.   I am determined to make a conscious effort to live in gratitude each day, each and every day. Will you join me?  I hope so. 

Namaste, Shalom and Amen

Love Yourself, Vanity?

Love Yourself Then

We often see the movies where these relationships come together so magically, and it’s beautiful, not saying it doesn’t happen.  If you’re not a warped, destroyed by academia man-hating modern feminist, you might want a relationship, a significant other to share your life with, your joys, sadness etc.. with.  I know I do.  Here is the thing, for me to have a relationship, I first have to have a great one with myself, with the Holy Trinity, with that great force of creation that brought me into being.  There can’t be an us with anyone if I am not clear in me, who I am, some clarity in that and my life’s path.  If I am one mass or bundle of confusion, how can I be in a relationship? What will happen is I will simply mimic that person in order to have an identity, clarity and that’s not authenticity,  So, it’s important that for any one of us to embrace an “us”, there first be a “me” with a core philosophy and worldview, preferably not one that hates men or women or is anarchist in nature, since that’s not healthy for anyone.  I value my Italian-American Catholic heritage from a cultural standpoint and there is wisdom in Catholic teaching.  However, my heart, spirit, and soul follow a very metaphysical understanding of the Bible, and a historical one, a beautiful combination.  That and one who believes in a Classical Conservative view of the world in terms of government is who I am, a teacher, minister of transformation in what I do is who I am.  Once there is a clarity in “me”, then there can be a journey to seek an “us”, that media naranja, that yin to our yang. I hope you are able to find your authentic core before the “us”, to have a happiest “us’ in your life, whether if be friendship or beyond. 

Namaste, Shalom and Amen

Life Lessons 42 and 43

45 life Lessons

Thanksgiving, mom wasn’t well, and I wasn’t feeling all that great, but that evening I get a call, come by for coffee at least, the kids are asking about you, so okay off I go, it was in the same building complex, so no biggie.  I am the only Conservative, firm in Christ as my anchor, the Bible as my anchor of truth, in this group of supposed devout Christians, who are progressives who believe the Bible and all such text to be a myth.  As dessert was being enjoyed, they started bashing our POTUS, MAGA, Conservatives, basically, me, as I am MAGA and Conservative.  I wanted to wage war in defense, but there were kids present and instead, I took a deep breath, went to the bathroom, took a few more deep breaths, composed myself and went back and enjoyed the sweets, and the coffee.  There are times when as much as you want to stand in staunch defense etc… it is wiser to take a few breaths, walk away and come back.  One of the aspects of maturity is knowing when to do so, where and when, how to fight which battles.  If you don’t calm the mind first, you won’t be able to really discern that.  Breathe is an important aspect of discipline I am learning.  The other aspect is that in addition to being grateful, as long as it is in line with biblical truth, concepts, and precepts of ethics, integrity etc.., it’s okay to ask even God for that blessing.  It’s okay to ask to succeed, thrive and even prosper with your talents, gifts, knowledge, understanding.  Asking with humility, also confidence and faith is the key, with belief, and the understanding that your timing of now please, right now, like yesterday please, may not be God’s timing. His may be tomorrow, next year, in three years, and it’s okay.  Ask for guidance on what to do from starting of the journey to reaching of destination.  If you don’t ask, even with God, with gratitude for blessing you have already, how will you have that relationship and how will anything happen? Something to think about. 

Namaste, Shalom and Amen

What’s Objective, What’s Subjective?

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Good question right, and seems simple enough, but not always and not for everyone.  I have been thinking a lot on this question lately, especially with the holidays, as my mom in her nineties is nearing, let’s face it the end of her time and as I’m getting older and my time will come to meet my creator face to face.  What’s the answer? 

I decided to ask the Holy Trinity, simply ask, ask for inspiration on this and this is the first image, thing that came to me, a scientific study, then a crime scene, which at first I didn’t quite understand, so I had to meditate a bit on it.  It finally came to me.  The scientific, let’s start with that one.  You have a scientific experiment done regarding a new device on ALS, MS or Fibromyalgia patients, and it’s a six-month study. The study then comes out and it’s conclusions given to six doctors in six different communities.  The study is the objective methodical process by which the results are arrived at, got that.  Now when these seven doctors see this study, from six different communities, different experiences based on those communities etc.. what happens? Do you get seven uniform opinions of how to apply the treatment, how beneficial it will be etc…? I would venture to say no.  Odd, since the study is the same objective truth, study seen by all, but yet different conclusions reached by perhaps four of the seven.   The interpretation is subjective to the person’s experiences, biased etc…  Same with a crime scene, take 10 different detectives from three very different precincts and you will get different immediate conclusions probably, but they are all seeing the same crime scene, so why the difference? Again they have their own experience, biased etc…   If in both cases the perception is skewed, the personal biased of wanting it to be how they want it to be rather than following objective truth and evidence takes over, well, it can harm and do not harm of medical science and even law enforcement goes right out the window.

God’s Sacred Scripture, Bible runs into the same issues.  It is an objective moral, ethical truth when studied with a multilayer of understanding, and holistically, when studies from a theological, sociological etc.. viewpoint, from a literal, as well an allegorical and metaphysical viewpoint.  When studied and understood holistically, then you can see the beauty of objective moral and ethical truth.  Otherwise, you just see it as a bunch of rules that weigh you down because you just want to do your thing your way, the hell with anything else. Again, not saying one should stay in an abusive or crazy cult situation, but basic moral and ethical truths matter.  For that to matter to be understood a relationship with the sacred, divine, with gratitude and spiritual life, boundaries and clear precepts matters. 

Namaste,Shalom and Amen

 

Life Lesson 40 and 41

45 life Lessons

Often we get so stuck in what was, or wasn’t, don’t have etc.., and I’ve been there myself., more than once.  Problem with that is you don’t get to live life, only re-live what was or wasn’t, a loop that plays over and over.  You end up literally stagnant and stuck where you are, unable to move forward, unable to really live life, be part of life, so you end up just an observer of life.  It’s not a good place to be, not for spirit or the soul, both need to be living, actually living.   How do you do that?  You show up, you make a conscious effort to make changes, even if small ones.  Often best to start with small changes, rather than huge ones.   One thing I have come to realize is that despite the fibromyalgia if I want to not be stuck, then it’s important to live life, to implement that wellness plan.  Yes, I will discuss my wellness plan with my doctor, but overall, it’s a good plan, and I think the doctor will agree to it, even if minor adjustments are made. If I want people to know who I am as an artist, as a coach, well I need to show up, need to join associations, go to events, even when I may not always feel like it.  I have to show up for life, not just observe it. I hope we can all learn to show up and live life, not just observe it. 

Namaste, Shalom, and Amen

Life Lesson 38 and 39

45 life Lessons

People talk about a legacy, leaving a legacy for others, and they build monuments and think about the material aspect of a legacy, of fame and fortune aspect of a legacy or activism as their legacy, all of which have their merit when property motivated and stewarded etc..What do many of the scriptures and legends teach us about legacy and what matters? What would a lot of people tell you matters most at the end of their life? Some might think of the material, but many would say the most precious thing is the people they love and who loved them.  Love really is the greatest legacy we have.  We do have to be discerning in the love we share because love has to be shared in a way that is healthy for all, that empowers others, inspires others, creates a certain independence to want to explore their own talents, gifts, path and vocation, keeping in mind what the bible says about what love is.  Doesn’t mean no boundaries, no law, no. Love comes in many forms, even in the form of songs, poems shared, the love put into building homes for people so love can come in many ways.  To love and be loved is the greatest gift we have, the greatest legacy and should be wisely applied, discerned and understood. 

What legacy would we maybe not want to leave future generations? Envy is something I hope we would not leave current or future generations with.  Envy steals the soul of the ability to find one’s own path, one’s own joy, one’s own inner peace.  Envy says I am a scared child who has this empty hole in me and I think things will fill it, titles will fill it, so I envy. If you have kids or any young family members that are around you a lot, envy is a poison I would hope you would not want to pass on. Rather I would hope you would pass on much more attractive qualities. Not only for your sake but for everyone’s sake. 

Shalom and Amen