Work for a Cause, Not Applause!!


I was watching TED talks this morning about the dangers of volunteer tourism in developing countries. The majority of speakers said that the major problem with their projects had been they simply did not fit in with the local communities normally through lack of knowledge as to how that community ran on a day to day basis and they ended up forcing their own ideals on the community as they knew no better.

So why is the power of community such a palpable energy, allowing for results that cannot be created by individuals but when people come together extraordinary results occur.

Community is derived from the Old French word communete and relates to several situations:

noun

  1. 1.
    a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common.
    “Montreal’s Italian community”
    synonyms: group, section, body, company, set, circle, clique, coterie, ring, band, faction; More

    informal gang, bunch
    “lesbians and gays are not one homogeneous community”
    • a group of people living together and practicing common ownership.
      noun: community; plural noun: communities
      “a community of nuns”
      synonyms: brotherhood, sisterhood, fraternity, confraternity, sorority, colony, institution, order, body, circle, association, society, league;

      rare sodality
      “the monastic community at Canterbury”
    • a particular area or place considered together with its inhabitants.
      “a rural community”
      synonyms: district, region, zone, area, local area, locality, locale, neighbourhood; More

      informal neck of the woods;
      informal manor;
      informal hood, nabe, turf
      “East Durham was very much a mining community”
    • a body of nations or states unified by common interests.
      “the European Community”
    • the people of a district or country considered collectively, especially in the context of social values and responsibilities; society.
      noun: community; noun: the community
      “preparing prisoners for life back in the community”
      synonyms: population, populace, people, citizenry, public, general public, body politic, collective; More

      society, nation, state, country, realm, commonwealth, homeland, fatherland, motherland;
      residents, inhabitants, citizens;
      humorous denizens, burghers
      “we can work together for the good of the community”
    • denoting a worker or resource designed to serve the people of a particular area.
      modifier noun: community
      “community health services”
  2. 2.
    the condition of sharing or having certain attitudes and interests in common.
    “the sense of community that organized religion can provide”
    • a similarity or identity.
      “the law presupposes a community of interest between an employer and employees”
      synonyms: similarity, similar nature, likeness, sameness, comparability, correspondence, agreement, alignment, parallel, parallelism, closeness, affinity;

      archaic semblance
      “they had a harmonious union based on a community of interests”
      antonyms: difference, incompatibility
    • joint ownership or liability.
      “the community of goods”
      synonyms: joint ownership, common ownership, shared possession; More

      joint liability, joint participation
      “the community of goods”
  3. 3.
    Ecology
    a group of interdependent plants or animals growing or living together in natural conditions or occupying a specified habitat.
    “communities of insectivorous birds”

So how do you relate to community? I belong to the Williams family community, the Warriors of Love community, the Melbourne dance community, the Sunday Assembly community and the Tai Chi community. I have different reasons for belonging to each one, but value each one for what they provide in my life.

So what have we said about the power of community over the years, some prominent people have had their say, let’s have a look:

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1. Mark Hyman, MD, believes that we all deserve a life of vitality—and that we have the potential to create it for ourselves. That’s why he is dedicated to tackling the root causes of chronic disease by harnessing the power of Functional Medicine to transform healthcare. Dr. Hyman and his team work every day to empower people, organizations, and communities to heal their bodies and minds, and improve our social and economic resilience. He clearly believes in the power of community to prevent illnesses vs. the after cure of the medical system.

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2. Mitch doesn’t say create more money, he says something that gives you purpose and meaning. Do you have that in your life: On Purpose.

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3. The practice of community takes us out of our cocoon into areas of action that call on us to be bigger than we think we can be for the sake of others.

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4. Moving from successful Hollywood film director to a seeker of the truth after a serious pushbike accident then creating the doco I Am The film asks the question: “What is wrong with the world, and what can we do about it?”, and explores Shadyac’s personal journey after the accident in 2007 that led him to seek the answers to “the nature of humanity”, “the world’s ever-growing addiction to materialism”, and “human connections” . The quote sums up where the journey took him.: Loving Kindness.

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5. Something a lot of foreign aid projects get wrong, its not about changing cultures.

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6. Did you fill your heart when you had the conversation with your career guidance counselor at High School, when you chose your major at Uni, when you got that promotion at work. To live in service to humanity, your community gives you the opportunity to do this: Focus on Humanity.

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7. The curly headed one, Albert was awarded the Nobel Prize for his service to others.

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8. This made me think of Gordon Gekko’s Greed is Good speech for some reason. How much do you hold in your heart?: Big Spender.

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9. The remainder of this lengthy quote by Joe Biden is as follows – For too long as a nation, we have been lulled by the anthem of self-interest. For a decade, led by Ronald Reagan, self-aggrandizement has been the full-throated cry of this society: ‘I’ve got mine, so why don’t you get yours’ and ‘What’s in it for me?’

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10. Life is a boomerang. What you give, you get. If you are always throwing out negativity then you should not be surprised when this is what you get in return. On the other hand if you are always positive then this is what you will receive as well. Be kind and compassionate to others because you never know when you may need kindness or compassion as well. Don’t judge or you could find others judging you. Some people spend their whole lives miserable and complaining, and they wonder why their life is so negative but they refuse to make an effort to change things or alter their outlook and attitude. If you want to get positive people and emotions in your life then you have to be positive in your dealings with others. If you are not willing to do this then you can not expect others to treat you this way in return. Always remember that fate can be fickle, and you should expect to receive what you give so make sure you give what you want to get. Boomerang.

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11. There are many terms for community, here are some of them.

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12. My friend Chris was responsible for a community building program in the culturally diverse public housing estates in my home city of Melbourne. How did he do it, creating community gardens: The Garden.

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13. There is no I in Community.

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14. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has said the world will be saved by western women and most successful aid projects make sure that women are involved. This statements points as to why: Can’t hold us Down.

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15. Steve Maraboli was selected by Inc. Magazine as a, “Top Leader to Follow”, while dubbing him as, “The Most Quoted Man Alive” (2016).

From the Pope, to the Dalai Lama, to Grammy Winners, to World Champions, to Oscar Winners, to Presidents and Prime Ministers… Steve’s life-changing words are shared and published throughout the world by media, global leaders, athletes, celebrities, and individuals across a wide-range of platforms.

Google Facts has Steve Maraboli referenced or quoted in over 2,000 books in their database.

What communities do you claim as your own, we all have them. Now the more relevant question, what do you contribute and give back to them.

Music is dominated by female artists today. Sabrina Carpenter, Ashana, The Sweet Charity dancers, JoJo Siwa, Kari Jobe and Christine Aquilera. The one male contribution is from Jim Carrey and his cohorts.

Namaste until next time, my dear friends.

namaste prayer

Doubt kills more dreams than Failure!!


You with either look back in life and say “I wish I had” or “I’m glad I did”. These prophetic words were spoken by Zig Ziglar, a preeminent American motivational speaker. The way of doing this is to become a champion at knowing what you want. Keep focusing on the “do not wants” and that is 100% what you will get more of! Make it a primary focus to keep on homing in on what you do want. It is the first thing to work on. The one thing that makes the biggest difference in your life.

Keith Abraham asks the following question to people in presentations, workshops and in general conversation. “What do you want to Achieve?” Only to have the reply come back to him ” I don’t know “.  Which them prompts to ask the annoying question, “Yes, but if you did what would you like to achieve?” When that fails, as it often does, I ask the fool proof question, “What don’t you want?”

So setting our sights on goals and dreams is an inherently important part of our life. Has society much to say about this? Here’s what I have chosen to comment on today:

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1. Your intentions steer you towards your goals. Lack of intention leads to lack of completing any goals in life.

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2. Barnsley’s culture is rooted in its industrial heritage and it has a tradition of brass bands, originally created as social clubs by its mining communities. Virginia Woolf  was born in an affluent household in Kensington, London, attended the Ladies’ Department of King’s College and was acquainted with the early reformers of women’s higher education. To become part of the society Ms. Woolf inhabited would truly take something from the mining background of Barnsley: Virginia Woolf.

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3. Remember when we were all going to be astronauts, firemen, doctors or vets, what happens to these lofty ideals?

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4. Penned by the worlds most famous philosopher, Ms. Unknown this makes me think of when we reach our goals and forget to set new ones: Stand in the Light.

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5. With a rap career spanning 30 years LL Cool J can definitely claim to having stayed focused over this time.

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6. They are not just the good bits, you need to put in the hard yards: Unconditionally.

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7. Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī , also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī , Mevlânâ/Mawlānā ( “our master”), Mevlevî/Mawlawī ( “my master”), and more popularly simply as Rumi , was a 13th-century Persian, Sunni, Muslim poet, jurist, Islamic scholar, theologian, and Sufi mystic. Rumi’s influence transcends national borders and ethnic divisions: Iranians, Tajiks, Turks, Greeks, Pashtuns, other Central Asian Muslims, and the Muslims of South Asia have greatly appreciated his spiritual legacy for the past seven centuries. His poems have been widely translated into many of the world’s languages and transposed into various formats. Rumi has been described as the “most popular poet” and the “best selling poet” in the United States.

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8. Studies show that right now we are actually living in the most peaceful time in human history…by far. Use this to your advantage and set yourself some awesome goals: If you want it, It can Happen.

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9. it all starts with a dream. You need to clarify an achievable realistic goal that has a timeline attached to it. Then you need to mentally confirm what it is you want to achieve.

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10. Does your goal live in your heart or your head. Purpose likes hanging around in the former: Mark my Words.

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11. The bit the Secret left out, you actually have to take action.

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12. What word do you use to describe it, I use Gaia, the power of the Universe: Mama Gaia.

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13. Agree with this totally, It’s going on in my life.

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14. Tenzin Gyatso, His Holiness, The Prince of Peace, whatever name we know him by the Dalai Lama is worth listening too: Purpose of Life.

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15. As a politician this man should know what he is talking about where the affairs of most countries are run on a short term basis to ensure the retaining of power not a vision to make the country a better place.

A definition I read recently of Setting our sights that stuck with me was as follows – Pursuing your Passion is not about being interested or involved. It’s about having a burning desire to live your dream everyday.

The Dalai Lama has made today’s music videos, along with the Indigo Girls, Jordan Smith, Kate Perry. Justin Bieber and Lindie Lila.

Namaste until next time, my dear friends.

namastebutterfly

Invest in People who Invest in You!!


I have 4,,828 friends on Facebook. I use the principle if we have 100 mutual friends and we have not met that we eventually will. This means I have a lot of the Melbourne Conscious Movement, musicians and female American life coaches as friends. I write a Facebook birthday card for each and everyone of them. Today one of the people was my friend from Landmark Education Thea Westra. As I wrote it I started to think about her remarkable book Time for My Life, 365 Stepping Stones, 2843 Life Power Boosters at your fingertips.

Thea wrote a book that has a page for every day of the year that has a stepping stone, action, challenge, quote, clearing, question and affirmation for you to contemplate. As an example her is today’s page.

Stepping Stone – Be willing to accept. A gift given and received requires two parties. The person who is giving the gift and the person who is receiving the gift. You must be open to receiving after you ask something to happen or to come your way.

Action – Today is the birthday of the author of this book. Send Thea Westra a hello birthday greeting. Just use the Contact Form at http://www.myforwardsteps.com . Your message will go directly to Thea’s inbox and she will reply.

Challenge – Be patient and focus on daily changes, rather than waiting for revelations.

Quote – Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non- essentials….Lin Yutang

Clearing – Check chair/table legs to see if they need new protective caps.

Question – Can you distinguish essential from non-essential?

Affirmation – I choose to be debt free.

So, do you allow time for your life? How does society relate to this noble practice, lets have a look:

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1. The one time this happened to me was in a motorcycle accident and memories of people who were special to me filled my heart and mind.

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2. I didn’t know Marilyn was a fan of Eckhart Tolle: Teach me Tiger.

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3. The problem with this is that if the person you are talking about departs, it leaves a huge gap. Working on self love as the driver might be more useful then it can’t be taken away when someone leaves.

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4. As we make more and more time for our life, we learn to stop doing the things that do not come from our passions: Lights.

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5. They say the magic is in the silence not the small talk.

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6. So many of the business gurus I read say it isn’t about the money, It’s about the time and to stop wasting time doing things you regret later or do not enjoy. It’s probably because of the second sentence above: No Regrets.

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7. Seems a bit contrary, If you are in the Now why would you also be living life as I can’t wait to get to the future?

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8. The 27 Club is a list of popular musicians, artists, or actors who died at age twenty-seven. It originated with an unsupported claim of a “statistical spike” for the death of musicians at that age, but this has been repeatedly disproved by research. Members are Jimi , Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Brian Jones in the 1970’s and recently Kurt Cobain and Amy Winehouse: “27”.

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9. At what age did you stop doing this with your friends, It’s supposedly when we grow up.

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10. They say we meet a few people in our lives who we can be separate from for years but when we get back together it feels like five minutes, I think that’s because they have placed themselves in our hearts: You’re in my Heart.

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11. I love the last line, sometimes I get stuck in the belief its a permanent fixture.

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12. Don’t forget the people who teach you the hard lessons: Difficult.

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13. It’s like the saying, if the door doesn’t open for you – It’s not meant to at that time in your life.

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14. What if, why did that happen to me, etc. etc. Turn around and walk towards to your dreams: Mr. Brightside.

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15. Rabindranath Tagore, also written Ravīndranātha Thākura, was a Bengali polymath who reshaped Bengali literature and music, as well as Indian art with Contextual Modernism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Author of Gitanjali and its “profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse”, he became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. Tagore’s poetic songs were viewed as spiritual and mercurial; however, his “elegant prose and magical poetry” remain largely unknown outside Bengal. He is sometimes referred to as “the Bard of Bengal”.

You can contact Thea via http://www.forwardstepsblog.com, it seems these days you receive a free 179 page eBook and for a paltry $10 Australian you can purchase the eBook of the book I am talking about in this blog.

Music is from Marilyn Monroe, Ellie Goulding, The Walker Brothers, the unknown Maria Stoian , Rod Stewart, Eminem and the Killers.

Namaste until next time, my dear friends

namaste prayer

 

What sets your soul on Fire!!


When people find their passion, they not only love what they do but they lead a life that other people only dream about. In his book Living Your Passion Keith Abraham has a quiz in which he asks the following questions:

  1. What does having a passion mean to you?
  2. What was one thing either in the past or present that you were passionate about, really focused on or just loved to do?
  3. If you won 10 million dollars in Lotto tomorrow, what would you love to do with your time and energy?
  4. Of all the things you have ever done, what were you doing when you were the happiest?
  5. What are the five things you value the most in your life?
  6. In 30 seconds, write down the three most important goals in your life right now.
  7. What have you always wanted to do but been afraid to attempt?
  8. What type of activities or circumstances gives you the greatest feeling of importance?
  9. What is the one thing which you would dare to dream if you knew you could not fail?

They say that 3% of people have written goals, I must know a rare breed of people because at least 50% of my friends do. So what does the world say about having and knowing your passion, Let’s have a sneak peek:

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1. Want a boost of energy, follow your passion and with it comes the energy to excel.

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2.The 3 P’s that fulfil my life: On Purpose.

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3. You’ll know when you find it, Steve definitely found his.

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4. It is said you are both a student and a teacher in your life when it comes to your passion it’s up to you: Teach Your Children.

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5. How beautiful, Live it, Breathe It, Beam It. Yowzaa.

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6. America’s greatest gonzo journalist often got people’s blood racing if you have ever seen the interpretation of his life in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: The hotel on Acid.

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7. When your passion enters your soul, it also enters your heart and mind.

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8. Passion fills you with the roar of the ocean, Its like people can hear it as you enter the room: Oceans Roar.

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9. That’s why it doesn’t go away, the rest of life may be random, but your passions are not.

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10. It’s Oprah time. always good advice: Born to be Somebody.

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11. Converting a nation with her passion, Julia Child definitely did this. Julia Carolyn Child was an American chef, author and television personality. She is recognized for bringing French cuisine to the American public with her debut cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and her subsequent television programs, the most notable of which was The French Chef, which premiered in 1963.

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12. having written over 300 blogs, I have definitely found mine: My, My, My.

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13. Make me think of Jim Carrey’s Fear or Love Speech, here it is: Fear vs. Love.

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14. They’re your dreams, no one elses: Live Your Life.

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15. And at the end, a wall chart for you to print out.

Don’t just get up, go to work, go to bed on a daily basis: do things that make your heart shudder.

Music is from Sabrina Carpenter, CSNY, Johny Depp, Dinah Smith, Justin Beiber, Troye Sivan, Jim Carrey and T.I. Enjoy their focus on passion and purpose.

Namaste until next time, my dear friends.

namaste prayer

 

There’s a blessing in the Storm!!


Picked up Danielle LaPortesexcellent White Hot Truth for a read last night: Here’s the link. Flipped open on the chapter about discernment. As I am also reading Gabrielle Bernstein’s Judgement Detox I like her definition that Being discerning is not the same as being judgemental. Discernment is big-minded and awake. Judgement is narrow-minded and in the dark. Discernment is our wisdom coming to life.

The main area I use my discernment is in my quest to have Interculturalism – Love and Respect for All: Everyone included spread across the planet. If people make a xenophobic statement about another culture I immediately ask them, have you ever met a member of that race. You would be surprised how often the answer is no. Mainstream media has a lot to answer for in this area.

So where do you use discernment and where has the world commented on it:

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1. Don’t base you reality on what is pushed at us from media empires whose purpose is to make a profit not necessarily report the facts.

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2. This must be a famous quote because there were so many versions of it. Charles Spurgeon was known as the Prince of Preachers in the 19th century. A bit in your face: Your Soul.

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3. Love the power of Maya’s words. Now there is someone who had the ability to discern instead of judging.

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4. Gold weighs more, so will your relationships: Gold.

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5. I have 50+ Invitations on my Facebook Page today, I will have to be very discerning with my choices.

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6. It also takes courage, that’s because it is much easier to judge and not do anything about said judgement: Brave.

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7. I’m Jealous. Mel Lawrence (May 17, 1935 – November 5, 2016) was a film director and producer and former concert and festival promoter. He is best known for his role as the Director of Operations at the Woodstock Festival, his work on the Qatsi Trilogy, and for directing and producing the Emmy-nominated documentary Paha Sapa: The Struggle for the Black Hills.

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8. It’s interesting how discernment seems to be tied up with Christain values. One would think that form of belief would take it out of the picture: We Believe.

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9. A great list as to what values your discernment could be made up of.

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10. In 2000, she was named one of the “100 most influential Black Americans” by Ebony magazine, which said that “Her books, lectures and television appearances have made her a multimedia high priestess of healthy relationships.: Human.

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11. That’s why self-love is so important, it empowers you to the people you will have around you.

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12. You know when it’s happening, bunker up: Killing In The Name Of.

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13. Discernment knows when to act and to intercede.

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14. But if the truth is an aspiration, then discernment is a heroine: Discernment.

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15. The place that will tell you many things, 24 hours a day sometimes, the mind. A lot of them are untrue. let’s practice listening to the spirit contained in our heart.

Discernment looks at several details and then balances these facts against what we believe. Not easily moved but can still be flexible. Without discernment, any snake oil salesman would love you as a target.

Not much pop in the music this week, just Sara Bareilles. An old classic from Spandau Ballet and my favourite rock anthem, guess which one.

Namaste until next time, my dear friends.

namaste-with-light

A Good Teacher is like a Candle!!


The spiritual teacher and author Eckhart Tolle says, “The moment you become aware of the ego in you, it is strictly speaking no longer the ego, but just an old, conditioned mind-pattern. Ego implies unawareness. Awareness and ego cannot coexist. Recognising this is like taking the first step into the light, to get there you need to go through the dark because both come with each other.

In her brave new book Judgement Detox, Gabrielle Bernstein takes you on a journey that is a clear, proactive, step-by-step program that helps you heal judgment and rediscover your oneness with others. Link to the Book. We all make judgements, it’s just how we let them control us that creates the issue, by acknowledging the fact we do this the power they have over us lessens and we can return to the light after the dark of having made the judgement.

So what has society said about returning to the light  over the centuries, here are some ways:

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1. Probably the reason that there have been sun gods for a lot longer than deities in religious history.

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2. Actions fostered by the light are much more dynamic than simply physical ones, Judy’s got it covered pretty well: Somewhere over the Rainbow.

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3. Something all parents must think of in those first magic moments when their children magically enter the physical world.

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4. And then there are the times we fail to recognise this fact, Inner not Outer: All of the Stars.

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5. And from the 1600’s, Francis Bacon offers up this classic fact about life, with the light, the dark.

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6. The quiet is always there, the skill is finding it amongst all the other stuff, such as the 50,000 thoughts per day: Light Up the Dark.

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7. I remember living in the country when birds used to announce the coming of the dawn/light when it was pitch black, certainly proof of faith that light will always overcome the dark.

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8. Isn’t it grand when someone enters your light who makes you forget to do this: Remember to Breathe.

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9. You are leaving the dark chamber, time to enter the light and fly.

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10. As I get older and older, I have more and more of these people in my memories light chamber: Memory Loves You.

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11. Great name for the organisation who can up with this light quote, HealthyPlace.com

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12. From the world’s greatest and most published philosopher Ms Unknown comes some sage advice, you have a unique light to turn on, other people’s will blow if you try and imitate them: Chasing Pavements

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13. Some may just be more difficult than others, but the way to the top and the well-lit view is always there.

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14. 5 simple words that point to the combination of the light and the dark. The second mention of stars so you know what song that means: Starman.

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15. And a reminder for the last from George Bernard Shaw. Looking through the window we see dark and light, it’s your choice.

The first step in the book is Witness your Judgement without Judgement. If this is all I get out of it, it will have been worth spending the time. I’m sure I will get much more, Gabbi is a great thought leader.

Music today is from Ed Sheeran, Adele, Mr Bowie and some obscure artists with only 25,000 Youtube plays. Enjoy.

Namaste until next time, my dear friends.

namaste prayer

What’s Left Unsaid, Says It All!!


Do you make judgements about people and withhold what you truly believe? Remember that not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. Bruce Lee once said that “Always be yourself and have faith in yourself. Do not go out and look for a successful personality and try to duplicate it.”

One way that is common these days of saying this is to speak your truth, how many New Years Resolutions will be I will speak my truth this year. What has the world said about this quirky term, to speak your truth, let’s have a look:

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1. People have often be scared out of doing this by people they see as braggarts thinking that you have to be over the top when sharing your truth, this is not the case for everybody, each of us is unique in our own way.

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2. Author of the iconic book “Women who run with the Wolves”, Clarissa points out what you become in touch with by speaking your truth: Speak Life.

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3. If there were not people who took this on, not much would change on the planet as people are addicted to being comfortable with what’s so.

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4. My proofreading background seems to think they left a word out of this quote, where do you think it is and which word is it, still a powerful request: Halo.

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5. Feel the tremors, time to speak up!!

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6. What would the great plays sound like if you left out half the lines, your truth is your great play: Not Afraid.

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7. Unnecessary things like worrying about judgements by others, make 2018 the best season of your life.

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8. Your truth does not have to taste bitter, in fact, it can taste like your favourite food: Falling Slowly

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9. The man who had three conversations with God states that your truth can ooze peace.

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10. A few other practices that may come in handy as you change your world and for others: Live your Life.

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11. Speaking your truth does not mean you have to become arrogant towards others, in fact, it means that listening to others is the best way to recruit them to your cause.

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12. Go where your heart leads you, says it all really: Your Heart will lead you Home.

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13. What I love about Caroline Myss is that she definitely speaks her truth, especially to participants in her seminars who are clearly not. I have had the honour of experiencing this twice.

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14.Rachel Naomi Ramen answered the question – How does curing differ from healing?

Basically curing is about repair and healing is about growth. So curing is something we do to others and healing something we evoke in others. Curing happens at the level of the body and leads to a re-normalization of physiology. Healing happens at the level of the person and involves an evolution and refinement of the individual, a deepening of the capacity for emotional life, mental life and spiritual life¾the furthering of personal wholeness and not physical health. Healing promotes the quality of life and the capacity to engage with life: Who You Really Are.
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15. I call it my tribe, they could be anywhere. I found a new one at the NYE chanting event I attended a few days ago.
“Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.” –E.E. Cummings
Music comes from the magnificent movie Once, Beyonce, Eminem, The Tigger Movie and several lesser known luminaries.
Namaste until next time, my dear friends.